'Word-of-Mouth'

photo: club group

From left: Carolyn, Marilyn, Eileen, Charles, Thea and Dan - who deserve a better photo.

The Club's New 'Thing of the Week'

Paris:- Thursday, 2. November 2000:- Even if I didn't fail to mention the weather last week, I would like to emphasize that today's weather is simply atrocious. I must have lived through two decades of freakish balmy times, but these seem to be over. It is raining.

This is not the wispy 'balmy times' rain of many past Novembers, but some serious pouring and there is wind to blow it in your face; with the accessory puddles to hop-skip, and the 'romantic' rain-slickened sidewalks.

No wonder then, why some people have anticipated this - how, I wonder? - and are wearing coats with hoods. This must a bit like the magical appearance of all Parisians having umbrellas when they need them. How do they know in advance?

I don't know, but let this be a warning - this November in Paris is starting out with serious weather. Seriously wet.

At La Corona, which is a bit more crowded because of the Toussaint week-long weekend, and thephoto: tea & tarte rain, one member is already waiting for me according to Patrick, who is the club's 'Waiter of the Week.'

The new member is Carolyn Stetson from Trenton, New Jersey. Carolyn has flown from the United States to Frankfurt and from Frankfurt to Paris and from Roissy to her hotel and from her hotel to this club meeting, non-stop.

Tea and a tarte to combat jet-lag for Carolyn.

What is even more remarkable than yet another club member's discovery of Lufthansa's low fares but undirect flights to Paris, is the fact that this is Carolyn's first visit to Paris and the first day of it. To calm her jet-lag and the walk of unknown length from the Luxembourg area, she has a tea and a wedge of apple tarte.

Something strange is happening to your club. Rather than simply being an offshoot of a magazine about Paris on the WorldWideWeb, 'word-of-mouth' is getting around to civilian non-readers of the magazine.

The next new member to arrive is Eileen De Micco - from Teaneck, New Jersey! - who has come by 'word-of-mouth' - from last week's Marilyn Burke, who also came by 'word-of-mouth.'

While all three of us are wondering about this, I may as well mention that Eileen introduces herself as being the friend of the new member who lives in New Jersey 'right across from 125th Street in Manhattan.'

Who could forget this geographical precision? On top of it, this means the club now has four members from the same corner of the same state, and three of them are here today. However, none of them know where absent member Eva Lee's Tranquility, NJ is located.

Charles Eitel is the next new member to arrive and he is also present due to 'word-of-mouth' - also Marilyn's. I don't where this stands in the lexicographical scheme of things, but 'word-of-mouth'photo: carolyn stetson is definitely a 'Thing of the Week.'

There are several candidates for 'Quote of the Week.' Marilyn says, "No 'fat' photos!" Charles says, "I'll never learn French!"

Marilyn, again, to Carolyn who has only arrived today in Paris, "Have you planned your next trip yet?" Charles again, "How can there be so many different kinds of butter?"

Carolyn, now recovered from jet-lag by club nonsense.

Half way through today's yak-session, more of last week's new members arrive in the form of Thea and Dan Robertson, who are the first to break the New Jersey majority by being from Crockett, California, which is somewhere around the Sacramento River which everybody should know is nowhere near Manhattan's 125th Street.

Actually, Charles Eitel has already broken New Jersey's strangle hold, by coming from Tampa, Florida - but since he lives in Paris too, this week's edition of club news has no 'City of the Week,' which seems to break no hearts.

'Yak-session' is not meant in an unkindly way, but today's members really go at it, with some volume; exchanging tips, stories, hints, fibs, cards, email addresses, and generally acting like new club members who belong to a real club.

This prompts Dan to ask the club's secretary - who has lost all track of everything - why the club was started in the first place.

I can remmber this, and in its 3000-word retelling, I miss even more 'Quotes of the Week' but what the heck! I am beginning to think there are more advantages to being a member of this club than being its 'secretary.'


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