...Continued from page 1

The day of Wednesday, 15. August had wonderful weather and it was the last day of the Voie Express beside the Seine being closed to traffic. Parisians and visitors used the day wisely, and in great numbers

Café Metropole Club 'Updates'

Last Thursday's meeting had its unusual 'firsts,' not including the two dogs who did not become members because they aren't people. They are not even allowed to ride the métro unless they are carried in a basket by blind people, and if they are, they still require half-price tickets.

To bring yourself up-to-date on the importantphoto: rue de la lune subject of ever newer and stranger 'firsts,' you can still read this meeting's medium-length 'report' before the end of summer. There's time, if you are quick.

Only for romantics - the Rue de la Lune - near the Porte Saint-Denis.

The next meeting of the Café Metropole Club will be on Thursday, 30. August. This day will be truly unusual because it will be the only club day this year on which Saint-Fiacre Day will be celebrated in Paris in August 2001.

Metropole readers and potentially new club members can find out more about this free club by viewing 'About the Club,' which is handy for finding out about the reason for the club's existence, its meeting time and location and so on, and other true facts such as it being free.

Metropole's Affiliates

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

'Bookings' has a reservation service for a wide selection of Paris hotels. Check out their offers and make your choice long before your arrival in France. Or, if all the other hotel booking services are 'sold out,' try this one. Other Metropole readers have.

'HighwayToHealth' provides a 'city health profile' as well as travel insurance for potential Paris visitors. If you've signed up for these services before you need them suddenly you will benefit from them. I hope won't be the case, but 'Things Happen.'

'Petanque America' imports quality Obut boules from France and will ship them to you anywhere in the Americas - which will save you the effort of carrying them all the way from Paris. Be the first on your block to introduce the game of pétanque - or boules. Nearly everybody can play this game, nearly anywhere, nearly anytime.

This Was Metropole One Year Ago:

Issue 5.35 - 28. Aug 2000 - This week's Café Metropole column was titled, 'Whoopee! It's 'Rentrée' Time' and the 'Au Bistro' news column was titled, 'Sky-High Fuel Prices.' This issue had one feature, titled 'The Day Before the Dog-Days In the Luxembourg.' This issue's club update for the meeting on 31. August became the 'Fifth Visit - Going On Sixth' Report. The week's 'Scene' column was titled 'More September Futures.' There werephoto: sign, rue notre dame de bonne nouvelle only two new 'Posters of the Week' and Ric's Cartoon of the Week was captioned 'Watch the Paint!'

This Was Metropole Two Years Ago

Issue 4.35 - 30. Aug. 1999 - This week's Café Metropole column was titled, 'The Movers.' The 'Au Bistro' column title was 'Yo-Yo Tax Week.' This issue had two features, titled, 'On the Rue de Mouffetard' and 'Paris, Nevada.' The 'Scene' column was titled, 'The Beginning of Fall 1999.' There were also the usual four new 'Posters of the Week' and Ric's Cartoon of the Week had the not-so-usual caption of 'Guys in Skirts.'

The 'Count-Up/Down' - Doomsday Version 35

While the streets of Paris seem quieter than usual, except for software viruses, my email InBox is not overflowing with new ideas for count-ups or downs.

Just as I am having difficulty even remembering one week's worth of 'Café Life,' I amphoto: citron presse having no better luck with this wildly popular weekly feature. If you are sleeping I can't say I blame you either.

So then, in this 35th week of the year 2001, it looks like Metropole's incredibly popular and long-standing feature of 'count-ups' or count-downs' to various dates in the past, present or future, has dropped dead. It looks like there is nothing left to do but bury it.

Next week on this channel and in this time slot - the 'Count-Down's Funeral.'

The Euro's Boring Count-Down

The number of days remaining this year is 126. How time flies! This is the number of days until the 'euro' currency introduction day on Tuesday, 1. January 2002 at 00:01. On this day, the euro will replace nearly all European currencies, to become the continent's unique currency.

Warning - some gas stations in France are now displaying fuel prices in 'euros' only. I have no idea what consumer groups may think of this because the currency is still fictive - but when paying for gas, it all gets straightened out at the cash register.

For those curious about the new European-style money, you can take a look at the French government's 'Euro' Web site for whatever it has to say about the looming arrival of the euro.
signature, regards, ric

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