The time changed in Paris this morning at two a.m., a week before it changes in the United States. My morning walks, which I usually start at about 6:30 plus or minus, have occurred before the dawn has broken [although it is always easy to see one's way in The City of Lights.] This all reminded me how far north we are here in Paris. Paris is at 48.48 degrees latitude north, which Google Earth tells me is a good deal north of Fargo, North Dakota and farther north than the northern most point of the state of Maine. The balmy winters here are a consequence of the Gulf Stream, which has shifted very quickly several times in recorded history and could easily shift again, dramatically altering the weather of Northern Europe. It rarely snows in Paris, and almost never more than an inch or two, which melts quite quickly.
Chapel Hill, by the way, is on the same parallel as Majorca, Ankara, and Beijing. When Chapel Hill gets a dusting of snow, the town closes the schools for three days.