...Continued from page 1

However, I do not recall seeing anybody from the INSEE taking the crowd's pulse at the time.

Place du Tertre - Crime Scene?

The sit-down painters in the Place du Tertre up on the top of Montmartre think the stand-up portrait artists may be 'disloyal' competition. The painters also think they may be worse things too.

This came out recently, during a meeting between painters, residents, elected officials and the police - held to discuss public safety problems on the 'Butte.'

The police spokesman said they have a bus full of cops parked in front of Sacre Coeur until 23:30 every night, and a manned police station near métro Abbesses which operates until 22:00 in the evening.

The spokesman also said visitors get lost because the area is poorly sign-posted. But the sit-down painters are more worried about what they see as competition from the stand-up portrait artists - some of whom are from eastern Europe.

Police maintain they hand out 900 to 1000 tickets a year; and that most of the stand-up artists are in order, paper-wise.

One of the sit-down artists pointed out that police themselvesphoto: stone seat, pont neuf calculate the 'Butte' gets six or seven million visitors annually - and asked if the police shouldn't be a bit more present, all of the time?

Some people prefer to sit on stone bridges rather than iron or wooden ones.

For example, the Montmartre Syndicate d'Initiative office in the Place du Tertre closes at 17:00, the last police leave at 23:30 - but the cafés and bars remain open until 02:00 - and pickpockets don't necessarily knock off early.

One major concern seems to be the fact that visitors don't know where to go to announce that they've been robbed - and if they did know, the police stations might be closed.

Artists must have police permits to exercise their profession on Montmartre; and this they are allowed to do from 10:00 to 22:00 from March to September; and to 20:00 during the rest of the year.

The number of permanent places for artists in the Place du Tertre is limited to 140. A new set of decrees goes into effect this coming June, but these are minor modifications of the existing rules.

The police spokesman said there wasn't really a problem after 22:30 because a police anti-criminal brigade takes over. Apparently this fact was unknown to local artists and residents.

Aprés Moi, le Déluge

About a third of the expected 300,000 spectators turned out on the Champ de Mars on Friday night for the big free concert, directed by Seiji Ozawa and featuring Andrea Bocelli.

The thunder that had been threatening the event did not actually crash down until the final notes of the third encore were dying away. With lightning flashing and rain falling from buckets, the crowd scattered, breaking all records for leaving a successful concert.

Sports News

Calais and its fourth division football team got ready for its epic encounter with first division Nantes on Sunday evening by having a pre-win party; having thousands of yellow and red scarves, t-shirts and other knickknacks manufactured, and generally having a good time.

The media fell in love with the part-time footballers, who are mostly full-time ferry-boat workers or fishermen or unemployed.

All who could bought tickets for the match, and those lucky enoughphoto: place dauphine to get them, got a big send-off when they travelled to Paris-Saint-Denis' ultra huge Stade de France for the match.

Also for sitting, the 'hidden places' only a few steps from the centre of town.

No such scenes of joy were to be seen on TV in broadcasts from Nantes, where the team's colors are yellow and green and the professional team is affectionately called the 'Canaries.'

Calais scored the first goal just before halftime. Calais supporters in the stadium went berserk with inexpressible joy.

In the second half, Nantes' 'Canaries' scored two goals; thus ending the media-dream of "Tout la France derrière Calais."

Apparently the Calais players and supporters did not understand the significance of the score, because they returned to Calais to a huge welcome and a tremendous post-game loser's party, that went on all night and was continuing towards Monday.

French Web Life: This Week's Short Version

Paris' Peace Wall, Still

The URL for Paris' Peace Wall on the Champ de Mars is: 'Mur Pour la Paix,' which is a Dot-Com and not a Dot-Org. You can also learn how to read the word 'peace' in 32 languages.

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