When it rains, run for cover. Especially if you are like me which means you don't carry an umbrella. Here in Paris, rains come unannounced throughout the year. That is the reason you are asked to carry an umbrella while visiting the city. If you live in Paris, the rains are not exactly as romantic as how Hollywood or literature writers paint it to be.
One of the frustrating feature when it rains is the difficulty to get a taxi. I am not talking about Bastille or Chatelet here. It is always to difficult to get a cab from these places whether it rains or not. In fact I was stranded at Chatelet a year back. I am talking about Place de Clichy and Blanche here. These are my favorite places to hail a taxi. Place de Clichy is always buzzing with activity and has a taxi stand which always has a steady stream of taxis in waiting. Blanche is the abode of the famous (and also the world famous) Moulin Rouge. There are always taxis here. When it rains, it is a different story.
The entire exercise of getting a taxi becomes frustrating because of abundance of taxis flying all across the place but none of it available for the person waiting for it. Water water everywhere but not a drop to drink! There are two major obstacles in this exercise. The first is simpler and I thought Paris had already solved it. The overhead lights of the cab has four modes; red, green, lighted but no colors and switched off. Red, green and switched off are easy to figure out. But how do you interpret the lighted but no colors? Are they taken or are they free? The second obstacle is your destination. The taxi driver slows down, enquires the destination and steps on the gas leaving you bewildered. No explanation provided. Apparently, the taxi driver doesn't like your destination.
Now if you are in Paris, here are a few pointers for you. Check the meteo website. It is very accurate. If it is going to rain, make plans that do not last longer than the last metro. You may even plan something till the first metro of the next day. If it is summer, you may be able to walk home. In winter, you are stuck in the cold. In such case, the only entertainment you will have are the antics of the drunken youngsters trying to impress the dressed-to-kill young ladies that are also waiting for taxis.