...Continued from page 1

I crossed over and went past Le Dôme where a waiter was looking out at the windy and nearly deserted Vavin intersection. The Rue Delambre around the corner seemed to have a few new places and I saw the Hôtel des Bains is fixing itself up.

All the cafés at Edgar Quinet looked like they are quietly waiting for the leaves to blow off the trees. The leaves are hanging grimly on this year. Going down the boulevard I wondered if a photo of the brown tower would mean anything and decided it wouldn't.

The boulevard's north side has a scattering of cafés, bars and the theatre, so you should not focus on the tower. It is hard to ignore through; and it is as ugly as a foundry without pipes.

Getting past it wasn't the hurricane I feared and on the other side, the Avenue du Maine was slick with rain. After seeing the usual things I never noticed before - Ceasar's Palace nightclub! - I easily found the alley leading to the - it has changed its name to 'Le Chemin du Montparnasse.'

The vines seemed to have run wild this year in this old alley lined with equally old ateliers. Some workmen were doing something underground in the centre of it, and I watched where I put my feet to make sure it's not down an open manhole.

At the ex-Musée du Montparnasse something has changed. There is new energy in the air. Althoughphoto: resto wadja its new show opened on 22. September, there seems to be a great bustle to send out press kits for it.

While Krystel Boula put one together for me I toured the exhibition. The nordics were a somber lot from somber lands and they came to Paris to find light.

I have never heard of many of the names, but there is a very bright portrait of 'Claudia' by Nils de Dardel, who was also in on the Ballets Suédois capers, along with Montparnasse man-about-everything, Per Krohg.

I skipped the métro and walked home up the Avenue du Maine. It isn't all interesting after Gaité, until getting to where Daguerre meets it. As soon as I turned into it, I started thinking about a double café near the end, at the Rue Boulard.

Later, I made a date with a couple of Metropole readers and after we ate, we sat in Le Select and wrestled with philosophy for a couple of hours. It is a very long time since I've been in Le Select. When I asked, I learned Philippe is on holidays. He took over the bar there about a year before I came to Paris in 1976.

Near midnight, the boulevard was wet, reflecting all the neons, but it seemed warmer. I got the next-to-last métro and rode the three stops to Denfert.

All photos except Le Select, taken in the Rue de la Grande Chaumière, Wednesday, 29. September 1999.
Metropole's New Web Address Continues

This is the new Web URL for 'Metropole Paris:' http://www.metropoleparis.com Some readers have said the old URL works fine, with the 're-direct' sending them automatically to the latest issue. Please 'bookmark' this new URL, but don't throw out the old one - just in case.

This Was Metropole One Year Ago:

Issue 3.40 - 5. October 1998 - The Café Metropole column was titled - 'Hot Cars and Cold Café.' 'Au Bistro' had 'The Big Train Robbery.' This issue had two features, entitled 'Auto Salon - Dreams Of Future Wheels' count down Eiffel Tower and 'Doing Saturday Stuff In Paris.' This 'Scene' column appeared for the first time in this issue. There were four 'Posters of the Week' and Ric's Cartoon of the Week was captioned 'Honk, honk! Beep, beep!'

This Was Metropole Two Years Ago:

Issue 2.40 - 6. October 1997 - The Café Metropole column was called - 'Warm Days - Cool Nights.' The Au Bistro column was entitled 'We Did It! We Got 'Golden October!' This issue had three features, entitled 'While the Air's Away On Paris' Pollution Day,' 'Montmartre Kicks Out Jams, Stomps Grape' and 'Prix de l'Arc - Out At the Track With Kaz.' There were two 'Posters of the Week' and Ric's Cartoon of the Week was captioned 'Pollution Chez Ed.'

The Tour Eiffel Countdown to 31. December 1999:

Only 89 more mostly cloudy, nasty wet, cool and occasionally stormy Paris and Ile-de-France autumn days to go until the really big year-end party is in full swing.
signature, regards, ric

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