...Continued from page 1

At 17:00 police forces briefly cleared the situation but the pompiers returned to carry out theirphoto: mignonnettes mini-bottle shop protest, which affected road traffic on the entire Perifreak! as well as the interior of Paris.

Traffic only started to flow again after 23:00. Desperate motorists used the emergency lanes to try and reverse to the nearest exits - but if they made it, it was only to find that all roads adjacent to Paris' ill-famed ring road were also blocked solidly.

This shop's miniature bottles are a form of 'fast-booze.'

Traffic controllers had warnings posted on the illuminated info panels, but most drivers got too far into it to take evasion routes.

Besides being trapped in their cars with nothing but mobile phones for company, some drivers risked running out of fuel.

The pompiers were protesting against the over-long hours that they are required to serve - especially in areas outside Paris. Some are on duty between 48 and 72 hours a week, depending on their work schedule.

With these hours, recruits are hard to find and one fireman based in Yvelines was quoted as expecting to see his annual 'service-days' rise from 115 to 124 if new recruits are not found.

The protest action did not involve Paris' own pompiers, who condemned the chaos caused by the action of their colleagues from departments not even adjacent to Paris.

Calls to the '18' emergency number received in Paris numbered 5000 between 21:00 Thursday and Friday morning.

Outside of Paris the pompiers are professional or they are volunteers, but in Paris and Marseille theyphoto: place de la sorbonne are actually military units - which are not allowed to have unions, go on strike or make public demonstrations.

But what the firemen are really worried about after this bout of bad PR, is the coming sales of their Christmas calendars.

The rain brings down a few leaves in the Place de la Sorbonne.

Every year I normally buy one and another one from whoever delivers the mail, and since I was lucky enough to be completely ignorant of the troubled Perifreak! Thursday night, I will do so this year.

The one time I was in one of these Perifreak! messes, it was as I was driving home in a car I had just purchased. French car sellers have a habit of making sure the gastank is next to empty when they hand over the keys.

French Web Life

Very little - that I became aware of - was the total of 'life on the Web' in France last week. There is always Internet 'business' of course, but this is mostly dreamland and the purest PR and I don't pay much attention to it.

The Frankfurt Book Fair ended last Monday without me even knowing it was on. This is a 'really big show,' mainly of interest to those in the trade. Apparently new this year, was the emergence of 'eBooks' - from some closet they were hidden in - and next year there will even be awards for them. Better late than never gives you this hyperlink to try, if only to see the janitors sweeping up the confetti.

Last Week's URL Shorties - are still valid because I have no new ones. Some free and practical information is available, such as weather, the bourse, horoscopes or the Paris traffic report, at Webfute, which has links to various free sources. All you want to know about the theatre; especially what is playing and what you should see, is presented by the new site, Webthea. The site also offers links to other theatre-related sites. The 8th Prix Möbius France 1999 ran off on Friday, 15. and Saturday, 16. October at the Cité des Sciences. This effort saluted the best multimedia productions for the past year. Suggestions for these Web site references have been supplied by 'Internet Actu.'

Go to page : 1 - 2
In Metropole Paris
Latest Issue
2008 Issues
2007 | 2006 | 2005
2004 | 2003 | 2002
2001 | 2000 | 1999
1998 | 1997 | 1996
In Metropole Paris
About Metropole
About the Café Club
Links | Search Site
The Lodging Page
Paris Museums List
Metropole's 1996 Tours
Metropole's 2003 Tours
Support Metropole
Metropole's Books
Shop with Metropole
Metropole's Wine
metropole paris goodblogweek button
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