Up-to-Date Weather Report: Glum

Terraces - Trocadero
No hurry, no worry, sitting on a terrace café, whiling the day away.

Lots of Clouds; and Some Silver-Linings Made of Paper

by Ric Erickson

Issue 2.25:- Metropole Paris - Monday, 23. June 1997:- There is no point in beating about the bush. You will notice it anyhow, from the photos, that the weather is not as good in Paris as it has been throughout most of the spring. Do not be fooled by the minute of sun caught at Trocadéro in the photo above, taken last Wednesday.

On the Tour Eiffel last Wednesday it was supportable. On Friday it was overcast and cool. It is still cool. Yesterday I looked out the window and saw the sidewalk was dry, but by the time Max and I got downstairs and got the bikes out, it was raining. We did one tour of the parking lot and packed it up.

Not much later, Willy came rolling home and with Max, they went down again for the bikes and the sun was shining; but by then Max was worn out from watching TV. Before he passed out, he cleaned some furniture; down in corners only small people can reach.

So here is the official weather forecast for tomorrow: don't count on it. Wear something that sheds water. Keep something warm handy.

It is the time of the end of the school year which means it is the time of the fêtes des écoles and all the villages have their fêtes too - and everything gets rained on. We have had four barbecues written off in a week.

The communes let off the fireworks anyhow. Even if I had the shutters up I couldn't see them from here - in a gulch, behind the green jungle of our park - but I could hear them starting around 23:00 on Saturday night. Kaboom! - a thousand school fete francs vaporized; kaboom! - another thousand up in smoke.

Two views of a school fete; under cover and under clouds.

Nobody has been knocking on our door to tell us we've won the second 70 million-franc Loto jackpot in a week, so my wife sent Willy out to look for money yesterday.

He rolled over to the little park which is currently torn up and being used as a stone-block sorting yard. It may stay this way for a while because I heard an unconfirmed rumor that the stone-layers had a fight with the mayor and they decided upon strike or a ruptured contract. The street they were doing is about half-done and the other half is a pit. The regulars of the tabac are soldiering on.

Meanwhile, Willy came back with a 100-franc note which appeared to be real. The kid can't find his socks but he's got a nose for money. A handy trait, especially when our ATM is locked up inside the supermarket on Sundays.

Some Events:

Falcon Spotting

This 'event' is supposed to be over, today, but it answers a question I have had since last year. The people you may see in the Square Jean-XXIII behind Notre-Dame looking through telescopes and binoculars, are not plane-spotting. They are looking at the falcons who are doing something with their nests up on the cathedral - this year, for nine days, from 14 to 22. June.

There are supposed to be 45 other falcon nesting sites around the city; and they are supposed to 'contribute to the natural equilibrium' of the capital - which means, if you have small, portable dogs, do not let them run around unattended.

La Villette Jazz Festival

Starting next Saturday, 28. June, and running through to Sunday, 6. July, Jazz is king out at La Villette. 50 concerts will be given by 350 musicians at 10 bandstands. Each day, from 18:00 to 02:00 in the morning, one ticket buys entry to whatever is going on - a lot! - plus there are two concerts at 16:30; one featuring Fontella Bass and the other, Shirley Horn.

Parc de la Villette
211. avenue Jean-Jaurés, Paris 19. For reservations call 08 03 07 50 75, and just for information: 08 03 30 63 06. (Be cool - these may be toll numbers.)

Le 12th Festival de la Goutte-d'Or

Montmartre is up to funny business again with this annual party, to be held from next Friday, 27. June until Sunday, 6. July. You can get the program from the Salle Saint-Bruno or the Mairie of the 18th, at the place Jules-Joffrin, or call 01 49 23 05 14 for more information. The main thing, is all the events and attractions are free.

14th Chopin Festival

Running from now until Monday, 14. July, there will be a series of concerts, to be held in the Organerie of the Bagatelle in the Bois de Boulogne. In the afternoons, around 16:30, the entry is 100 francs, and the evening candlelight concerts cost 150 francs, and will begin at 21:00. The program is long and varied - you should call for information, 01 43 39 87 07, and for Chopin especially, 01 45 01 74 99.

The Floral Park out at the Château de Vincennes is also having a series of concerts; classical, jazz and for younger listeners. The complete programs for both sets of concerts can be obtained from the Paris Tourist Office and from the reception hall at the Hôtel de Ville.

The Foire Saint-Germain
Ferris wheel in Tuileries

Mentioned last week but worth a reminder, this foire, with 820 years of history behind it is worth at least a casual glance. There is singing, dancing, theatre, exhibitions of paintings and artists, and book sellers' stands - mostly located at the place Saint-Sulpice. This 'foire' runs to the end of the month. Find the program at the Mairie of the 6th, at 78 rue Bonaparte, or phone 01 40 46 75 12 for more information.

Fête des Tuileries

If your kids are wearing you out complaining about being dragged through endless métro tunnels to see a lot of 'art' and 'culture,' get your credit charged up and take them to the annual 'fête forain' in the Tuileries Gardens; It runs until Sunday, 24. August.

The big wheel is in place even if the weather isn't.

Features rides, ferris wheel with good view of the Louvre and Rivoli, plus the usual ikky cotton candy junk. Open daily from 11:00 to midnight, and to 01:00 on Fridays, Saturdays and the eve of public holidays. Métro Tuileries will get you there. There are also plenty of other things to sneak off and do while your kids are whirling around, so let them have their wretched excesses.

Metropole One Year Ago

Issue 1.19 -1. July 1996 featured the columns - Metropole 'Diary' - Nonsense in Paradise; and 'Au Bistro' - Logical Start to Tour de France: in Holland. Articles in the issue were: In the rue Quincampoix - Turning Coin into Paper; Sorry for the Inconvenience - Marble Malls and Renovations; and Bring Money or Plastic - Half-Price Wooden 'Garage' Shirt - Paris On Sale! Ric's Cartoon of the Week rounded off the issue.

It appears as if I have somehow gotten a week ahead of 'One count-down eiffel Year Ago.' This could have happened any one of several ways, but is probably due to me not knowing today's date - after writing 'Coming Events.' I can skip this feature next week, or hope that a surprise 'week-back-leap' happens before then.

The Tour Eiffel Countdown to 2000: Only 922 days left to go.

Regards, Ric
Send email concerning the
contents to: Ric Erickson, Editor.
Metropole Midi © 2014
– unless stated otherwise.
logo, metropole sml midi logo No matter how good it tastes,
there is no such thing
as a free lunch.
Waldo Bini