The Bridges of May

photo: bistro paradis du fruit

People ask - 'Are there veggie restauants?' Here's
the answer.

Henri Tops Elvis

Paris:- Monday, 23. April 2001:- May can be a beautiful month in Europe. The weather may be fine or it may even be lousy, but the month of May gives Europeans a free taste of pre-summer in the form of three possible 'bridges' - on Monday, 30. April, Monday, 7. May and Friday, 25. of May.

Each of these days, combined with Tuesday, 1. May - 'May Day' - Tuesday, 8. May - 'Victory In Europe Day,' and the holiday of Ascension on Thursday, 24. May - give the month three four-day weekends.

Attention - the first of these is next weekend and it is immediately followed, after a short three-day 'week,' by the next long weekend. There is only one complete five-day week this May.

Old Business Before New

The city of Paris' budget is the first order of business for the new mayor, Bertrand Delanoë and the newly elected city council, and this involves a bagatelle of 33 billion francs. A major part of this budget is a holdover from the previous city council so it is neither all of the old nor will it be much of the new.

'Les Verts' want the city's subsidy of 43 million francs for the Paris-Saint-Germain football club to be modified or eliminated - butphoto: waiting for metro this unlikely to happen because of previous agreements. The green party wants other things too, but this is probably not the budget to get them with.

Less than crowded for a métro rush-hour.

All parties have had civil security in their platforms. Mayor Delanoë had proposed that the city hire 500 cops, but tripped up on the rule in France that says these be civil servants - which means that 500 cops can't be simply recruited from the ranks of unemployed policemen - because there are none, because civil servants are never, in principle, unemployed.

However, a way around the problem would be to recruit 500 to simply watch over school entries. This would free regular police for other duties and also enable them to come to terms with the 35-hour week, which will effectively reduce police forces in Paris by 1000 officers.

This is a minor setback for the new mayor rather than a grand defeat. All of the right-wing parties in the city council are still squabbling with each other and do not seem close to putting forward a single leader of the opposition in the Hôtel de Ville.

Disappeared - 1300 Parisians

This is the number of people in the city who disappear each year. To find them, the Police Judiciare has a special unit of 35 officers who concentrate their work on finding the 'disappeared,' dead or alive.

Apparently, the investigations are made delicate because 'disappearing' is not a crime in itself. Some of the 'disappeared' are surprised to find the police looking for them. They cannot be made to 'undisappear' by law.

Of the 1300 'gone missing,' 60 percent are men and 40 percent are women. The special police unit usually locates about 95 percent of the 'disappeared.' For the remaining five percent, Interpol is alerted. In turn, Interpol asks Paris about its five percent 'disappeared' from Warsaw, Vienna or Zagreb.

If found, and desiring to stay lost, the police will inform relatives that the 'disappeared' are more alive than dead, but they will not divulge the location of the missing person against their wishes.

If there is no hard evidence, it is only seldom that foul play is suspected. In rare cases it is suspected.

Henri Tops Elvis

Tonight Henri Salvador tops the bill at Paris' famous Olympia music hall, where all of France's and many of the world's top stars have had top billing. If Elvis has played it, I wish somebody would tell me.

Henri started out as a guitarist and singer with the Ray Ventura orchestra in 1937. It wasn't until 1967 that he enjoyed his first 'hits,' which were 'Zorro est arrivé' and 'Le travail, c'est la santé.'

In 1973 he was discovered by TV and followed this triumph in 1987 at the Montreux Jazz Festivalphoto: guiment house, av rapp with Quincey Jones and Count Basie. His 1994 record, 'Monsieur Henri' was a semi-flop.

Henri is not a quitter though and his new record, 'Chambre avec vue,' released in 2000, has sold more than 600,000 copies. His present stint at the Olympia continues until next Saturday and he will wear a white suit like the one he wore with Ray Ventura.

A Hector Guimard building in the Avenue Rapp.

Asked if his 'return' to the stage was a 'game,' or a 'delight,' or 'for the money,' he said it was merely a coincidence. He was sent the song 'Jardin d'hiver' and it turned into a whole album, and now he's locked into touring until next March.

On Wednesday, 18. July 2001 Henri Salvador will be 84 years old, and if he looks like he did on TV tonight, he will still be going strong. Henri Salvador is booked to return to Châtelet for five appearances at the end of this year.

The Green Card Loto

For the past ten years the US government has officially been operating an annual lottery, which allows the winners a chance to get a 'green card,' the magic residence and work permit that allows foreigners to seek their fortunes in the United States.

This has also created something of a business in itself, involving 'experts,' lawyers, and now, even that are advertising on billboards set up near the Perifreak!

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