...Continued from page 1

In my Petit Larousse the 'W' section takes less than two pages and the only French-origin word seems to be 'witloof.' It is a variety of chicory. I wonder how it is pronounced.

School for Muscles, Part Canteen

On the second day of re-hab the leg-therapy lady fed me a chocolate which powered up my gimpy leg fine. Then I had to wait until the eighth session to get a super-powerful espresso café, although it was a bit weak on the sugar side.

The results have been astonishing and a lot of people have been complimenting me on not walking like a unbalanced top anymore. It is all on account of a week's interval between the chocolate and the café.

Vital Shopping Tip: Continued

Paris' annual Winter Sales - the 'Soldes d'Hiver' - began two weeks ago and continue for the next four weeks. Don't forget the Café Metropole Club's meeting on Thursday, which will be a fine time to take a two-hour 'breather' from looking for increasingly rare bargains.

Metropole's Affiliates

The following product or service providers have chosen Metropole because their offers may be of value to readers and I agree with them.

'HighwayToHealth' provides a 'city health profile' for potential Paris visitors as well as travel insurance. These services will be a benefit if you've signed up for them before you need them suddenly - which I hope won't be the case.

'Petanque America' imports quality Obut boules from France and will ship them to you anywhere in the Americas - which will save you from carrying them all the way from Paris. Be the first on your block to introduce the simple game of pétanque - or boules.

'Bookings' is a reservation service for Paris hotels. Check out their hotel prices and previews and settle on your choice long before your arrival in France.

Café Metropole Club 'Updates'

Last Thursday's club meeting was about normal for this time of year - except for the presence of five members. The club's secretary will be at the meetings even if no one else intends to be - because some members show up unintentionally.

Keep up with your club's 'news' by reading the 'report' of the last meeting. It was written by the club's secretary as usual and features photos - some in focus - of all the members who were present.

The next meeting of the Café Metropolephoto: fiat 500 of the week Club will be on the Thursday, 25. January 2001. Don't forget that this particular meeting will only happen once. If you miss it, it'll be gone forever - which is much longer than an average millennium.

This photo needs no caption. But for those who've forgotten, it is the reappearance of the 'Fiat 500 of the Week.'

New readers are also invited to take a look at the current version of 'About the Club,' which is useful for finding out about the club's meeting time and location.

This page also contains other 'facts' about this free club in Paris, which is the only one 'Metropole Paris' has for all of its readers who are Metropole Paris readers, or Café Metropole Club members, or are in Paris, or are residents here, or any combination of these.

This Was Metropole One Year Ago:

Issue 5.03/04 - 17-24. January 2000 - This week's issue covered two weeks, with the Café Metropole column being titled, 'Black and White All Over.' Thephoto: sign, jardin germe pour tempets 'Au Bistro' column's title was '35-Hour Work Week Becomes Law.' This issue had one feature titled 'Paris In Winter's Greys - Photography and Eugène Atget.' The Café Metropole Club got a boost from a member, called 'Kathleen's Modest Proposal.' The club's weekly updates featured two of them - on 20. January as 'A Very Quiet Meeting' and on 27. January as 'An Extra Quiet Meeting.' The 'Scene' column's ho-hum title was 'Not Much New Stuff - Yet.' There were four new 'Posters of the Week' and Ric's Cartoon of the Week was captioned 'Where Is Libya?'

This Was Metropole Two Years Ago:

Issue 4.04 - 25. January 1999 - The week's Café Metropole column was titled, 'Paris Launches Prohibition.' The 'Au Bistro' column was titled, 'When Two Is Better Than One.' This issue's only feature was titled, 'In the Père-Lachaise Cemetery.' The 'Scene' column was titled, 'Now Featuring More of 1999' after a week of 1999 the previous week. There were also four 'Posters of the Week' and Ric's Cartoon of the Week had the caption of 'Autoroutes are Clear Again.' This wasn't in Paris.

Metropole's Dubious Count-Up

So far Metropole's postmillennial brand-new and totally original 'count-up' - introduced here last week - has managed to elicit exactly one snort of disgust from one reader, who doesn't have to remain nameless but will.

Paul Babbitt, a Café Metropole Club member and New Jersey resident inspired this new 'count-up.' How it got into its present form isn't exactly Paul's fault - just so you know to whom the 'disgusted snorts' should be addressed.

Metropole's new 'count-up' is based on the likely but approximate date of the very first American tourist's visit to Paris. The name of this person has been determined to be Benjamin Franklin. Paul has written that he was not only probably the first American tourist in Paris, butphoto: sign, espace lautrec perhaps the most popular - and possibily responsible for a local fad called 'Franklinmania.'

Benjamin Franklin borrowed a lot of money from the French government so there could be a country called the USA, which is famous for software, Japanese pickup trucks, and lots of money - which can be helpful for visits to Paris. He arrived in Auray on Tuesday, December 3, 1776, and immediately proceeded to Paris. For the sake of this 'count-up' the ETA of the first American tourist's arrival in Paris is Thursday, 5. December 1776.

Day One of the 'Count-Up' is therefore Friday, 6. December 1776. As of today, it has been 81,862 days since the first American tourist arrived in Paris.
signature, regards, ric

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