...Continued from page 1

As in the first occurrence, early this year involving a jeweler in the place Vendôme, Disney does not know where the fake bread is coming from. In the latest seizures, the police have also gotten samples of 10,000 dollar notes from Hong Kong and 10,000 DM notes.

Le Parisien's story uses Uncle Scrooge's French name, Oncle Picsou, so if you get offered a bargain-basement rate on a 1000 DM 'Oncle Picsou' keep your wallet in your pocket.

Sandwiches Go Public in Paris

For many thousands of years, a sandwich in France was a half-baguette sliced length-wise, liberally smeared with butter, and containing a slice of honest ham, and you could get one almost any time of day or night in any café-bar.

Some two centuries after the sandwich was invented by Lord Raglan - or was it Lord Cardigan? - the word entered the Larousse dictionary in 1875. Le Parisien says the French version can also be made with farm-fresh cheese, washed down with Beaujolais, and the delicious damage costs only 500 calories.

Grand hotels, catering to Americans, have long served sandwiches of the more elaborate sort, such as the famous 'Club' sandwich. The Bristol charges 40 francs for theirs, while the Prince de Galles snoozing in the Tuileries asks 130 francs for one containing lobster.

'Paris-Plage' is where you make it.

But what probably set the democratic seal of acceptance of the ordinary 'Wonder-bread' sandwich in Paris was the introduction of them by Marks and Spencer on the boulevard Haussmann. They bring in tons of them direct from Britain every day. The idea of being able to buy an inexpensive sandwich where you shop really caught on.

Last Wednesday, Le Parisien devoted two full pages to the subject, listing no less than 21 good sandwich locations - from the Plaza-Athénée to the kosher l'As du Fallafel in the rue des Rosiers, while not leaving out the traditional version as served by the Boutique Flo Prestige.

In fact, as you go around Paris, it seems as if sandwich kiosques have almost completely displaced the - also traditional - crêpes booths, although they haven't completely disappeared. And, do not forget, you can still get an honest and sturdy baguette-ham sandwich in almost any bar-café at any time of the day or night.

The Official Reason for Holidays

On Saturday, Le Parisien stated on page two in a very large double-page headline, 'L'Essentiel, c'est le Plaisir.' What can I add?

And the Reason for Not Having Fun

In the same edition of the paper, it poses the question: 'Paris, Ville la Plus Chère du Monde?' It goes on, 'Tokyo Counter-Attacks,' by reporting that the Japanese Ministry of International Commerce and the MITI have claimed that Paris is more expensive than Tokyo by two percent.

Ninety-three items were compared for price and Paris came out on top, two percent higher than Tokyo. The Paris Tourist Office has counter-counter attacked by stating that Paris is in thirteenth place in Europe and only in 32nd place worldwide if you are comparing the prices of overnight stays.

Paris also quotes the Euro-org 'Eurocost' as stating that Moscow is the most expensive in the world, followed by Tokyo... all the same Paris estimates the cost for a couple for a weekend from Friday noon to Sunday evening at a cool 3500 francs. Figures I have from a couple of years ago reckoned on a thousand to 1,500 francs a day per person.

It is what might be the warm-up to a big mud-slinging match, because the stakes are colossal. Meanwhile there are the two Polish guys who are camping out in the Champ de Mars, hoping to last three weeks on 800 francs between them. They've found a way to get up to the first floor of the Tour Eiffel without paying too.

Sports News is Sort of Off Again

This week my excuse is that I've run out of time. Fiat 500 Instead of boring Sports News, I want to remind readers of the 40th anniversary of the Fiat 500, which first took to the roads of Europe in 1957. When production stopped in 1975, 3.5 million had been licensed. At 2.90 metres in length, it was 10 cm shorter than the Mini.
Here is a beautifully-preserved sun-roof Fiat 500, right behind the National Assembly.

La 84e Edition de la Tour de France

If this year's Tour de France interests you, there is a full-service Web site in French as well as in English, which contains far more information than you could hope to ask for - unless you are a 'true' fan, of course.


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