August Banner Photo

A couple of days early, since it’s moving so fast, this month’s banner features France’s high-speed TGV, or Train à Grande Vitesse (French for “high-speed train.” Go figure). You can find the original shot at the London Daily Mail’s online site accompanying a nice article about a reporter’s trip to Athens.

Developed in the 1970’s, TGV began carrying passengers between Paris and Lyon in 1981, and was so successful, neighboring countries jumped on the bandwagon and developed their own high-speed lines. TGVs now connect France with Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium, Great Britain, and Switzerland. According to Wikipedia, a TGV test train set the speed record for wheeled trains in 2007, reaching a zippy 574.8 km/hr (that’s about 357 mph for us non-metric troglodytes).

This picture looks a lot like Kansas, with the lovely field of sunflowers, rolling farmland, and stormy skies. I drove the Kansas Turnpike last weekend, and can say with conviction that we really, really ought to have a TGV in Kansas.

Like all the trains featured on this website, the TGV runs on subjective time, and being from France, it makes you feel uncultured and inferior doing it.

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