"I Didn't Come Here to Not Have
a Good Time!"

photo: l->r, stephan,nelly, dan, marion, antoine

From left: Stephan, Nelly, Dan, Marion and Antoine.

The 'Report' of the 46th Weekly Meeting

Paris:- Thursday, 17. August 2000:- The sky is half blue and the other half is cloudy; the air is 'normal' room temperature, so the day for the club meeting is nearer half full than empty - weatherwise.

I think this calls for one of my louder shirts, one with more primary colors and less gold than last week's 'African' shirt; the one I ended up wearing the rest of the week.

The métro ride to Châtelet is unremarkable. There is no accordionist or other musicians at all and nobody is selling the 'welfare' newspapers. There are no strange or unusual passengers. It's a routine ride because most of the posters are last week's, still unchanged.

On the Rue de Rivoli I remember to look for the 'art squat' building. I don't see it, but when I see thephoto: dan rupert goofy 'art' doorway I've been passing for months, I have the wit to look up. No wonder I didn't see it before - I was too close to it. From across the street there's a fine view of it - the whole building front looks cobwebbed.

Just about everything else on Rivoli and the quays is the same as last week. But when I get to La Corona, a harried Patrick tells me two new members are waiting - before 15:00!

Sporting his Walmart 'Boonie' hat, Dan Rupert joins the club.

Waiting is only one; just offset from the club's central tables. Dan Rupert is waiting for today's club meeting to start and he's already started his waiting with a great big glass of beer.

Almost at once Dan tells me he is retired and that trout fishing takes too much time. "I've got things to do in my life," he says.

He is annoyed about salmon. His wife had some good salmon in Paris, and when they got home she attempted to make it the same way - 20 times. He adds that he is 'working hard' being retired.

He also says his feet are shot. This happened by not walking, before he got to Paris. Here, he is determinedly walking, and he starts right after he gets up at 7:30 and goes out to check the nearest marché to get some fruit and have a café.

"I haven't walked more than a 100 yards - here I walk kilometres every day." Then he shows me his custom-built 1.5-metre-long walking-staff, made out of heavyphoto: beer, vodka Chinese Red Oak, with a hand-loop and an indestructible tip at one end.

He says, "Métro - the best I've ever seen! I haven't had to fight anybody yet. What you do in Paris," he continues, "We see one thing a day. Paris is for loafing around."

The flask - only slightly taller than the half-litre beer glass.

At this point Marion and Stephan Nowak show up with Antoine Browaeys in tow. Antoine is another guy learning how to be in the physics business.

This is something Dan Rupert dropped out of; because he thought it had no future. Okay, this was 30 years ago and he did chemistry instead, which also didn't have a future at the time either.

But before the others arrived, Dan not only showed me his quarter-staff, but showed me his custom, unbreakable vodka flask too. "Sweet red wine with a double shot of Absolut - makes a 'Blue Monday.'"

Even though I have no idea if you can even get 'sweet' red wine in France, 'Blue Monday' becomes the 'Drink of the Week' because Dan recommends it so highly. He can't stand ouzo though, he says.

"I'm bad, okay? But I wouldn't even drink with them ouzo crazies!" We tell him about pastis, but he is convinced this has something illegal in it.

Before the others can order anything, Dan is giving everybody a whiff from the flask, and telling them to order something they can put vodka in. Marion doesn't like the smell - and I presume she knows her schnapps - it smells a bit flowery to me.

At some point, Dan's wife Nelly comes in with about 30 postcards, and sits a bit away from us so she can write messages. Nelly and Dan live some of the time in San Pedrosula in Honduras, so this becomes the 'City of the Week' even if they live in the middle of Ohio sometimes too.

When all our drinks come - my 'orange juice' has ice cubes in it - it's not a regular 'Waiter of the Week' - Dan switches to a small beer, a 'demi.' He tosses a ton of coins on the ticket, decides these aren't enough, and covers the note with a new-lookin twenty-dollar bill.

Continued on page 2...
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