Paintings, Music, Expos

photo: fountain, place chatelet

You can sit yourself down at Châtelet's fountain
and skip what's below too.

Snoozy August Program

Paris:- Saturday, 29. July 2000:- Every week at this time, the page becomes uncontrollable. In summer, especially in August, there's supposed to be nothing happening.

Just to be sure, I go over to my local Mairie and bother the great ladies there by asking them for the month's 'program.' There's nothing in August, they say, and give me their copy for July - which contains some items continuing until September - while keeping their own abbreviated copy of August's program for their own use.

Who cares? By putting in some more of the summer's items, I put off the day I will have to look at the material I've already received for the fall program.



The items below are not necessarily 'new;' but they open this week's column.

The Rau Collection - Fra Angelico to Bonnard - 106 major paintings by El Greco, Tiepolo, Millet, Fragonard, Pissarro, Degas, Cézanne, Monet, Renoir, to name a few. Until Thursday, 4. January 2001. Monday to Wednesday, from 11:00 to 20:00; the rest of the week until 22:00. Musée du Luxembourg, 19. Rue Vaugirard, Paris 6. Métro: Saint-Suplice or Mabillon. InfoTel.: 01 42 34 25 95.

Pierre Bonnard - One of the summer's big events, featuring 90 paintings, from Nabi to landscapes to nudes. Until Monday, 9. October; from 11:00 to 18:00, until 21:00 on Thursdays. Closed Tuesday. Musée Maillol at the Fondation Dina Vierny, 59 - 61. Rue de Grenelle, Paris 7. Métro: Rue du Bac. InfoTel.: 01 42 22 59 58.

Antoine de Saint-Exupery - called 'celebration of a myth,' this homage is to a real person; aviator and writer. Until Monday, 20. November; from 9:30 to 18:30. In the Panthéon, Place de Panthéon, Paris 5. Métro: Cluny or RER Luxembourg. InfoTel.: 01 44 32 18 00.

Bals-Concerts - mentioned in a feature this week, don't miss the free Sunday concerts at the Kiosque à Musique at La Villette each Sunday starting at 17:30. Next Sunday: La Banda Municipale de Santiago. Métro: halfway between Porte de la Villette and Porte de Pantin. Drinks, snacks and toilets available.

Calcinculo - Feria-Musica - is in the Grande Halle, also at La Villette. This is some sort or aerial-ballet, suitable for all ages. Until Saturday, 9. September; from Wednesday to Saturday at 20:00; on Sundays at 16:00. Adults, 110 F. Métro: Porte de Pantin. InfoTel.: 01 40 03 75 75.

Nacao Pernambuco - is also a summer of Brazilian music, with the Maracatu Naçao Company. Until Saturday, 9. September. At Le Divan du Monde, 75. Rue des Martyrs, Paris 18. Métro: Pigalle. InfoTel.: 01 44 92 77 66.

L'Art dans la Pub - is an exhibition showing 'art' in advertising; meaning art borrowed and not 'advertising art.' Until Sunday, 27. August. Except Monday, open 11:00 to 18:00; on weekendsbrochure: aout 44, min defense from 10:00 to 18:00, and late on Wednesdays until 21:00. Musée de la Publicité, in the Arts Décoratifs, 107. Rue de Rivoli, Paris 1. Métro: Palais Royal-Louvre. InfoTel.: 01 44 55 57 50.

August 1944 - On Sunday, 6. August 1944, General De Gaulle called for Paris to be liberated by French forces. Starting the next day, the diverse groups of the 'Resistance' began the battle for Paris, forcing the Allies to finally allow General Leclerc to move his 2nd Armored Division towards the city on 22. August. Meanwhile the occupiers counter-attacked the Mairie of the 5th. The battle continued until 30. August.

Available as a brochure, but there are two museums too. Open 10:00 to 17:45. Musée de l'Armée, 2nd floor, Hôtel des Invalides, Paris 7. Métro: Invalides or Varenne. InfoTel.: 01 44 42 37 72. Also visit the Mémorial du Maréchal Leclerc Hauteclocque et de la Libération de Paris et Musée Jean Moulin, Jardin Atlantique, above the Gare Montparnasse. Open daily except Mondays, from 10:00 to 17:40. InfoTel.: 01 40 64 39 44.

Eugène Delacroix - the national museum devoted to this painter occupies part of his personal apartment. After quitting his atelier in the Rue Notre-Dame-de-Lorette, Delacroix moved into the Rue de Fürstenberg in 1857, in order to work on Saint-Suplice. Open from 9:30 until 16:30 daily except Tuesday. Musée National Engène Delacroix, 6. Rue de Fürstenberg, Paris 6. Métro: Saint-Suplice. InfoTel.: 01 44 41 86 50.

Quartier d'Eté - more than 90 events make up this summer's Paris program of artistic events, to be performed on streets, places and squares throughout the city. This program goes on more or less non-stop until Tuesday, 15. August - until everybody comes back in other words. Some of these events are free and others are not. Paris' own Web site should have complete details. InfoTel.: 01 44 94 98 00.

Quartiers d'Eté - More - Dance - Triton 2 TER, the Jardin des Tuileries, except Sundays, at 22:00. Métro: Tuileries. Until Sunday, 17. September, 14th Festival Musique en l'Ile, at the Saint-Louis-en-l'Ile church and the Saint-Germain-des-Prés church. InfoTel.: 01 44 62 00 55.

This item closes the opening 'new' events for this week. You will find some other new items below. Again, lack of time has not permitted me to form a text to go with each of the images - but they do represent current events in Paris.

Again this week this section is under-reported, because I think I've hit this column's limit by just putting in a very few extra items that are currently on. Watch this space for when I get the courage to put in the fall's coming events.

Salon Naifs et Primitifs - will feature more than 200 works by about 40 international artists. From Sunday, 10. September until 3. October. At the Espace Saint-Martin, 256. Rue du Faubourg Saint-Martin, Paris 10. Métro: Louis Blanc. See the Web site for Naifs et Primitifs.

Picasso's Sculpture - is an exhibition, largely postered in the métro, currently at the Centre Pompidou. Youphoto: beaubourg, centre pompidou know who Picasso is and you know what sculpture is, so this is just an excuse to put in the culture factory's Web URL - which may be new. Otherwise, the place is open from 11:00 to 21:00 or 22:00; but never opens on Tuesdays. InfoTel.: 01 44 78 12 33.

Pompidou's new look looks like its old one.

Monet At Marmottan - for the first time in Paris, the Musée Marmottan presents the complete collection of paintings by Claude Monet. A special section is set aside for the Giverny paintings. Degas, Caillebotte, Sisley and Gauguin are also present, but this is nearly a mono-Monet show. Until Sunday, 31. December; from 10:00 to 17:00, except Mondays. Musée Marmottan, 2. Rue Louis-Boilly, Paris 16. Métro: La Muette. InfoTel.: 01 42 24 07 02.

Soleils Mexicains - is a big show of 250 pieces that continues until 13. August. Featuring pre-Columbian works, up to the major talents of the 20th century. This is part of the '2000 In Paris' homage to the Americas. Until Sunday, 13. August. At the Petit Palais, Avenue du Winston Churchill, Paris 8. Métro: Champs-Elysées Clemenceau. Except Monday, open from 10:00 to 17:40; to 20:00 on Thursdays. InfoTel.: 01 42 65 12 73.

L'Arts d'Afrique, d'Asie, d'Océanie et des Amériques - this is the first exhibition of the future Quai Branly museum so it is housed in the newly re-opened Pavillon des Sessions in the Louvre. The 'artworks' featured are called 'primitive' by some, but the French have coined a new phrase; 'Arts Premiers.' The entry to the Louvre's new section is located to the south of the Carrousel Arch. Follow the signs to the Porte des Lions. InfoTel.: 01 40 30 51 51.

La Dame de la Mer - Anita Conti was one of the first woman oceanographers; one who sailed all of the seas, from 1935 until the '60's. This is an exhibition of her photos, taken of the world of deep-sea fishing. Until Sunday, 10. September. Except Mondays, open from 11:30 to 18:30. At the Pavillon des Arts, Les Halles, Porte Rambuteau, Terrace Lautréamont, Paris 1. RER and métro: Châtelet. InfoTel.: 01 42 33 82 50.

Versailles: Summer Events - as in past years, Versailles' summer events do not vary much, but remain spectacular. 'Les Nouveau Plaisirs' features ballet by Maurice Béjart, set mostly to music by Mozart and Rossini. The 'Fêtes de Nuit' are at the Neptune basin and take place on Saturday evenings. There is one on 26. August at 21:30, and on 2. and 9. September, also at 21:30. 'Les Grandes Eaux Musicales' are every Sunday until 8. October, and include Tuesday, 15. August. For more details, check out the Musée du Château de Versailles Web site. To get to Versailles take the RER 'C' line, to Versailles R-G, or take the SNCF train from the Gare Montparnasse. InfoTel.: 01 30 83 77 88.

Yiddish? Yiddish? - the exhibition continues until Sunday, 8. October, with a little more Yiddish Atmosphère on 17. and 18. October. At the Musée d'Art et d'Histoire du Judaïsme, Hôtel de Saint-Aignan, 71. Rue du Temple, Paris 3. Métro: Rambuteauphoto: l'ete satie, abbaye aux dames, caen or Hôtel de Ville. Museum hours Monday to Friday from 11:00 to 18:00; and Sundays from 10:00 to 18:00. InfoTel.: 01 53 01 86 60.

Nils-Udo - moves into the Musée Zadkine to take up temporary residence in its garden atelier in order to sculpt some vegetation - up to five metres high. This exhibition continues until Monday, 24. September; from Tuesdays to Sundays; and including the holiday Tuesday, 15. August. Musée Zadkine, 100 bis, Rue d'Assas, Paris 6. Métro: Notre-Dame-des-Champs or Vavin. InfoTel.: 01 43 26 91 90.

Mesurer l'Atmosphère - is a temporary 'weather' exhibition at the newly renovated and worth a visit nuts and bolts museum. After ten years of being mostly closed and about four years of being all closed, a major Paris museum has reopened. It is full of the tools and machines - many original - that helped make our modern world. A report about my visit to it is featured in an issue earlier this year.

Musée des Arts et Métiers, 60. Rue Réaumur, Paris 3. Métro: Arts et Métiers. Open daily except Mondays, from 10:00 to 18:00; until 21:00 on Thursdays. Entry: 35 francs. InfoTel.: 01 53 01 82 20.

Bijoux Romantiques - were made in the time of George Sand, which is now considered 'romantic.' This exhibition of decorative jewelry featuring more than 200 pieces - some from the Musée des Arts Décoratifs - will be taking place until Sunday, 1. October, at the Musée de la Vie Romantique. In the Hôtel Scheffer-Renan, 16. Rue Chaptal, Paris 9. Métro: Blanche or Pigalle. InfoTel.: 01 48 74 95 38.

Le Canotage - while canoes are happening outside, in the interior there will be 'Intérieur' by Vlaminck, which the Musée Fournaise thinks he may have painted there. 'There' is the Ile des Impressionistes at Chatou, which has its boatworks, historic museum and a restaurant. This is great for getting an impression of the impression the Impressionists had about it all.

Until Sunday, 29. October. At the Musée Fournaise, Ile des Impressionistes, 78400 Chatou. Take RER line 'A' to Chatou-Croissy or Reuil-Malmaison. Open Thursday and Friday from 11:00 to 17:00 and on Saturday and Sunday, from 11:00 to 18:00. InfoTel.: 01 34 80 63 22.

Paris' Museums Online - is not the official name for the new Web site that has been launched to present Paris' own 15 museums.


Aventures Architecturales à Paris - is subtitled 'The Art In the Rulers' and is not all new architecture is ugly even if this seems to be the case. The current show, which continues until Sunday, 1. October, shows off Paris' best modern works. Just inside the entry, see the 'Newspaper Bar' for a spacy view of the world's papers - but without cocktails. Open Tuesday to Saturday, from 10:30 to 18:30; Sundays from 11:00 to 19:00. At the Pavillon de l'Arsenal, 21. Boulevard Morland, Paris 4. Métro: Sully-Morland. InfoTel.: 01 42 76 00 97.

Le Monde Dans la Tête - what else can you expect when 50 international modern artists are around? Big names, big stuff, until Sunday, 29. October. Open Tuesday tobrochure: musee d'art et d'histoire du judaisme Friday, from 10:00 to 17:30, on weekends from 10:00 to 18:45. Musée d'Art Moderne, 11. Avenue du Président-Wilson, Paris 16. Métro: Alma-Marceau InfoTel.: 01 53 67 40 00.

The 'Lost Angel' of Montparnasse - is Abraham Mintchine, who came from Kiev to Montparnasse in 1926, and remained relatively discrete until he died near Toulon in 1931. This exhibition will present 34 paintings, done in the last years of his life. From Wednesday to Sunday, from 13:00 to 19:00. This exhibition continues until Sunday, 10. September. At the 'Chemin du Montparnasse,' 21. Avenue du Maine, Paris 15. Métro: Montparnasse or Falguière. InfoTel.: 01 42 22 91 96.

La Comédie Humaine en Peinture - illustration of texts by Balzac, too large to be printed, by Serge Kantorowicz. Balzac, a failed printer, did want his books illustrated - and the Edition Furne of the La Comédie Humaine is one result. When he died in 1850 about 110 engravings had been done, by the best there was. These serve as a counterpoint to Serge Kantorowicz' works. From Tuesday to Sunday, from 10:00 to 17:40; until Sunday, 24. September; at the Maison de Balzac, 47. Rue Raynouard, Paris 16. Métro: Passy InfoTel.: 01 55 74 41 80.

Atget, le Pionnier - his pioneering photographs have become national photographic treasures; an exhibition of them continues until Sunday, 17. September. Except Mondays, from 10:00 to 18:00. Hôtel de Sully, 62. Rue Saint-Antoine, Paris 4. Métro: Saint-Paul or Bastille. InfoTel.: 01 42 74 47 75.

Prix Arcimboldo - For digital images Christophe Clark and Virginie Pougnaud received special mentions. Their works are on view until Sunday, 3. September. Open Wednesday to Sunday, from 11:00 to 19:45. La Maison Européenne de la Photographie, 5-7. Rue de Fourcy, or 82. Rue François-Miron, Paris 4. Métro: Saint-Paul or Pont-Marie. InfoTel.: 01 44 78 78 00.

Désirs de Rivages - is the name of the first marine photographic biannual, with homage to be paid to René Jacques. This exhibition is open from 10:00 to 17:50 daily except Tuesdays, until Monday, 18. September. At the Musée de la Marine, in the Palais de Chaillot, Place du Trocadéro, Paris 16. Métro: Trocadéro. InfoTel.: 01 53 65 69 69.

10 Ans d'Acquisitions - concerns the last 10 years of photographic acquisitions by the Musée de la Photographie. I've mentioned this museum's location may be a bitposter: l'art dans le pub difficult to find before, so be sure to call for directions. Musée Français de la Photographie, 78. Rue de Paris, 91570 Bièvres. This exhibition continues until Sunday, 17. September. InfoTel.: 01 69 35 16 50.

Vue Par Olivier Mériel - this concerns photographs of Victor Hugo's Hauteville House on the island of Guernsey, where the writer lived in exile from 1855 to 1870. The Ville de Paris has owned the house since 1927; so it decided to have Olivier Mériel take another look at it in 1998. This exhibition was shown at Hugo's house in Paris in late 1998. Hauteville House, 38. Hauteville Saint-Pierre-Port-Guernsey. Until Saturday, 30. September; open daily except Sundays, from 10:00 to 17:00 in July and August. Closed on some holidays. InfoTel.: 00 441 481 721 911, which is a long-distance number if phoning from France.

Exodes - for six years and through 40 countries, the photographer Sebastião Salgado sought the story of the world's refugees. Until Sunday, 3. September, at the Maison Européenne de la Photo, 5-7. rue de Fourcy, Paris 4. Métro: Saint-Paul or Pont-Marie. InfoTel.: 01 44 78 75 00.

L'Eté Satie - is a series of exhibitions and concerts running all summer, which are intended to get you out of the casinos in Normandy. 'Satie sur Scène' is at the Musée Eugène Boudin in Honfleur and 'Variations Satie' is at the Abbaye-aux-Dames in Caen; the first until Monday, 18. September and the second until Sunday, 10. September. Most of the concerts are in Honfleur, at the Greniers à Sel. InfoTel.: 02 31 09 06 00. Other events are programmed for September; InfoTel.: 02 31 85 73 16.

L'Octuor de France - offers 10 chamber music concerts in the Orangerie in the Parc de Bagatelle. Brahams, Ravel, Haydn, Mozart, Schubert;two entry prices: 100 francs for afternoons and 150 francs for candlelight - plus 10 francs for entry to the park. Until Tuesday, 15. August. Parc de Bagatelle, Bois de Boulogne, Paris 16. Métro: Pont de Neuilly, plus bus 43, plus 10 minutes' walk. InfoTel.:01 42 29 07 83.

Cuba Cubana - is Cuban stuff in Paris, including lots of 'Happy Hours,' which are between 21:00 and 22:00. Then there's something about DJ's and 'every Friday,' until Friday, 8. September. All of it at Glaz'Art, 7 to 15. Avenue de la Villette, Paris 19. Métro: Porte de la Villette. InfoTel.: 01 40 36 55 65.

Comédie. Pas Moi - concerns two short plays by Samuel Beckett, which run about one hour together. Directed by Christian Rist, with Sylvie Chenus and Catherine Laborde, plus the director. On Tuesday to Saturday at 20:30 and on Sunday at 16:00. At the Théâtre de l'Aquarium Cartoucherie in the Parc Floral in the Bois de Vincennes. Métro: Château de Vincennes. Free shuttle bus is called 'Cartoucherie.' InfoTel.: 01 43 74 99 61, or see TheatreOnline and fnac below for tickets.

Favela Chic - is the Parisian version of a Brazilian slum with music; now in a new location, open since May. This is in the Oberkampf area, so if this place is too hot, there are fall-back places nearby almost as hot. Favela Chic, 18. Rue du Faubourg-du-Temple, Paris 11. Métro: République. InfoTel.: 01 40 21 38 14.

Operissima - part one is a live 'best of' the 19th century Italian opera, with the Ignacio Jarquin Company and the Polyphorum Symphony Orchestra; and part two is a whole opera, 'Cavalleria Rusticana.' Every Sunday at 16:00 at the Bataclan, 50. Boulevard Voltaire, Paris 11. Métro: Oberkampf or Saint-Amboise. InfoTel.: 01 43 14 35 35.

Le Siècle Métro - is not about this magazine, but about the 100th birthday of Paris' underground transport system. The Maison de la RATP has an exhibition about itself, continuing until 1. January 2001. Except Saturdays,, open from 10:00 to 18:00 daily. At 189. Rue de Bercy, Paris 12. Métro: Gare de Lyon, where 10 bus lines also have stops. Toll InfoTel.: 08 36 68 77 14. See 'Métro rides' below.

Fugues Impressionistes - is an 'escape' brochure put out by the Ile-de-France, intended to get you to run around Luzarches, Auvers-sur-Oise, Sannois, Pontoise and Osny. After tiring of impressionism, then you are supposed to take a break at the 'Guinguettesbrochure: nat museum delacroix des Bords de Marne,' which are on the opposite side of Paris. 'Sundays in Canoes' also includes Marly-Le-Roi and Rueil-Malmaison. Then you get to the 'Paysagists,' who are scattered around Barbizon and Moret-sur-Loing. Finally, there several Paris museums - Orsay, Marmottan, Montmartre and two nightclubs. Find out more at the Espace Tourisme d'Ile-de-France, in the Carrousel du Louvre under the Pyramid. InfoTel.: 08 03 81 80 00.

De Gaulle - Musée de l'Armée - The occasion for the new installation of an exhibition devoted to Général Charles De Gaulle and France-Libré is the 60th anniversary of the General's famous 'appeal' to the occupied French; broadcast from BBC transmitters on 18. June 1940. Open daily from 10:00 to 18:00. At the Musée de l'Armée, north entrance of the Hôtel des Invalides, 129. Rue de Grenelle, Paris 7. Métro: Invalides, Latour-Maubourg or Varenne. InfoTel.: 01 44 42 37 72.

Ecrits, Dessins, Papiers - Jean Cocteau was his own archivist, and has been followed by his adopted son, Edouard Dermit. Cocteau didn't write like you or me, he rewrote, re-designed his words and their placements on a page, over and over again. Paris' Bibliothèque Historique now has a large sampling of the poet's works, which will be on display until Sunday, 1. October. From Tuesday to Saturday, from 10:00 to 18:00; on Sunday from 12:00 to 19:00. Closed Tuesday, 15. August. At the Bibliothèque Historique, 24. Rue Pavée, Paris 4. Métro: Saint-Paul. InfoTel.: 01 44 78 80 58.

1930's Live In Boulogne Boulogne-Billancourt's Musée des Années 30 - Espace Landowski has quite a lot of those 'good old days,' and some of them were pretty nifty. Worth a slightly long métro ride and featured in Metropole. At 28. Avenue André-Morizet, 92100 Boulogne-Billancourt. Métro: Marcel-Sembat. Open Tuesday, 12:00 to 18:00; Wednesday and Saturday, 10:00 to 18:00; Thursday, 14:00 to 20:00; Friday, 14:00 to 18:00 and Sunday, 13:00 to 18:00. Closed from 15. to 30. August. InfoTel.: 01 55 18 46 42.

Oser Le Savoir - which translates as 'Dare to Know,' features '10 keys to the future' which will be presented with a changing program of new exhibitions and debates until the end of the year. This takes place, in cooperation with the CNRS, at the Cité des Sciences & de l'Industrie at La Villette. 30. Avenue Corentin-Cariou, Paris 19. InfoTel.: 01 40 05 80 00.

'Pas Si Bêtes! 1000 Cerveaux, 1000 Mondes' - The Grande Galerie de l'Evolution du Muséum National d'Histoire Naturelle is for discovering evolution. The museum is in the Jardin des Plantes, with its entry at 36. Rue Geoffrey Saint-Hillaire, Paris 5. Métro: Place Monge is closest.

Walk-In Outside Movies - are now a tradition at the Parc de la Villette, which has a sit-down place for you to watch free movies on an inflated screen. Except on Mondays, films roll nightly until Sunday, 3. September; and start about 22:00 when it's darkposter: paris quartier d'ete enough. Deck-chairs are available too, if you don't like sitting on grass. Prairie du Triangle, Parc de la Villette. Métro: Porte de Pantin. InfoTel.: 01 40 03 75 75.

Ciné l'Eté - this event used to be called 'Aout au Ciné' but it has been extended, to begin in July. You need to get a card called 'Paris Ciné l'Eté' from the reception office in the Hôtel de Ville on the Rue de Rivoli, or at any Mairie, RATP offices, and some métro stations. By being able to prove you are under 25, the card allows entries to 150 cinemas for 25 francs per film. The cards are still available and the program continues until 31. August.

The Cinémathèque Française - has a non-stop program of rare film projections. This summer's double bill: 'B' movies and 'Classics.' The film museum operates in two locations: at the Palais de Chaillot, garden entry; and at its location on the Grands Boulevards at 42. Boulevard de Bonne Nouvelle, Paris 10. Métros: Trocadéro for Chaillot and Bonne Nouvelle for Grands Boulevards. Auto-InfoTel.: 01 56 26 01 01.

Club MedWorld - one day when I was looking for a beach on the Champs-Elysées I wandered in to the Club Med offices because I thought they might know where to find one. They built one instead and it takes up three floors, at Bercy Village. No beach I think, but nightly shows at 22:30. Open Monday and Thursday from 11:00 to 02:00; on Wednesday and Sunday from 10:00 to 02:00; on Friday from 11:00 to 04:00 and on Saturday from 10:00 to 04:00. and At métro: Cour-Saint-Emillon, on line 14. InfoTel.: 08 10 81 04 10.

Roue Libre - is the RATP's program to get you out of the métro and off the buses, and on to your own pedal-power. HQ is at 95. bis, Rue Rambuteau in Les Halles, plus seven other locations. Bike rentals are from 20 francs per hour and tours are from 85 francs, and require reservations. On the month's last Saturday, long tours are organized - call the HQ for details. InfoTel.: 01 53 46 43 77, which is necessary to call for the guided tours.

Holiday Bikes - rent bikes for all sizes of people by the day, weekend and week; from 50 francs to 390 francs. They also rent scooters, motorcycles and even cars. Open all week from 9:00 to 12:30 and from 15:00 to 19:00. At the 'Parking' Foch-Etoile, opposite 1. bis, Avenue Foch, Paris 16. Métro: Etoile. InfoTel.: 01 01 45 00 06 66..

Cyclotourists - should also check out the 'The Best Biking Guide to Paris And Day Trips Outside Paris,' which is by Rose Burke who has personally tested everything for you, both downhill and uphill. You have to pedal yourself though.

Antique Métro - for the métro's 100th anniversary, the RATP has decided to re-run the old red and green 'Sprague' wagons that disappeared from service 20 years ago. The line chosen for this is the six, between Etoile and Nation, which is largely elevated and crosses the Seine twice. Photo-op stops are made on the Bir-Hakeim and Bercy bridges. Reckon on 80 minutes for the round-trip. The RATP will be running these trains on Sundays - on the 30. July; and the 13 and 27. August. The actual anniversary run was Wednesday, 19. July. Reservations necessary. InfoTel.: 01 44 68 38 12.

The Ile-de-France is the region that surrounds Paris - which is more or less well-known. The region's problem is that it is very big; but its major attraction is that it is authentic French 'countryside,' and it is not far from Paris. The current brochure for summer festivals and events in the Ile-de-France runs to 41 pages.

Paris' Balloon - offers Paris views from a high place, without need of an elevator. Again in the air after a tough winter, you should call first to find out if it is a balloon day. For adults, 66 francs and 33 for kids. At the Parc André Citroën, Paris 15. Métro: Balard. InfoTel.: 01 44 26 20 01.

France Miniature - is designed for a small-scale visit to 150 sites in France, or for small people. New this year are 50 interior scenes; also small. By train from Montparnasse or Saint-Lazare via La Défense, stop at La Verrière and take the Sqybus no. 411 - to 25. Route du Mesnil in Elancourt, which is southwest of Versailles. There is a round-trip and entry price of 110 francs for adults; less for children. Open from 10:00 to 19:00: until midnight on Saturdays. Toll InfoTel.: 08 36 68 53 35.

Musée de la Poupée - has a new exhibition, continuing until Sunday, 5. November. Paris' doll museum will be featuring dolls made from 1850 to 1959 that pre-figured Barbie, followed by Barbie herself, from 1959 to 2000. The third partbrochure: la villette, july, august shows off Barbie's rivals; all the Bellas, Sindys and Nancy de Famosa to mention a few. Except Monday, open daily from 10:00 to 18:00. Musée de la Poupée, Impasse Berthaud, Paris 3. In an alley opposite the métro: Rambuteau. InfoTel.: 01 42 72 73 11.

The RATP's 'Cyberdeck' - The RATP has installed Internet terminals in four RER 'B' line stations. These offer free access and unlimited online time. The 'Cyberdeck' units are equipped with touch-screens instead of 'mice' and they have French keyboard layouts, so these are two features that take a bit of getting used to.

CyberPoste - France's La Poste has 1000 post offices throughout France with Internet connections, possibly making La Poste the world biggest cybercafé without any café. All you do is buy a rechargeable Cyberposte card for 50 francs, which is good for one hour of network time. You can also get a personal email account.

Free Entries - are offered to all on Sunday mornings, from 10:00 to 13:00, at some of Paris' own museums. This involves up to 15 different places, so I'm not going to list them all here. There are exceptions to the free entry; not everything is free. Except for bigger shows in the Musée du Petit Palais, most of Paris' own museums have modest entry charges anyway.

Paris Musées Editions - Paris' 14 or 15 museums regularly publish books concerning their permanent exhibitions and catalogues for their temporary exhibitions. The 2000-edition catalogue is now available. Otherwise, the best location I know of for a wide selection is the Bibliothèque Historique's shop at 22. Rue Mahler, Paris 4. Métro: Saint-Paul. InfoTel.: 01 44 59 29 40.

Les Eglises à Paris - is a reedited brochure featuring texts and illustrations about 92 of Paris' churches, which includes divisions by age: medieval, renaissance, modern; and bymagazine: nova, paris secret, with feeling locations. Slick and 72 pages, it is free at the Paris Tourist Office on the Champs-Elysées.

Guided Visits - Paris Gardens - the city has an annual program of guided visits to its gardens - also for the blind and the deaf; which include conferences, demonstrations of gardening and explanations about the life of plants. There is a brochure with more details available, and there is also the city's Web site. InfoTel.: 01 40 71 75 60.

Tickets:Théâtre On Line - presents the majority of theatre performances in Paris and the Ile-de-France, with news of new shows, criticism, and has a searchable database. France's giant media and cultural retailer also has its 'fnac' Web site, which also has tickets for many events of every sort.

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