The 'Meeting of the Week'

photo: the big group of the week

In today's big group photo not everybody is even in it.

Members Blitz Secretary

Paris:- Thursday, 27. September 2001:- It is safe to admit that the temperatures are warmer in Paris. Yessir, they are rising and are headed for 20 whole degrees alright. Yesterday's near tropical downpour was a bit of a surprise though, with the deeper puddles around the Madeleine submerging some of Europe's smaller cars.

I think, if I can remember the latest forecast correctly, that maybe it might be more sunny tomorrow - in the morning or afternoon - I'm not sure which, because it wasn't clear when the next little wet front is going to arrive from northern Portugal.

Tonight there was no forecast for the weekend. This can only mean that the situation is pretty 'iffy.' No use looking in Le Parisien, because its forecasts were for Seine-et-Marne yesterday, thephoto: full beer, clubs bic pen Ile-de-France today, and who-knows-where tomorrow.

Future temperatures are a mystery too, because France-Météo is 'on strike' for this part of the forecast. My best guess is that we'll have to go outside and look at the sky, and guess really hard.

One of several 'Beers of the Week,' plus the club's official Bic pen.

If you are expecting a 'Sports Roundup' to follow the weather here, you will be disappointed. First off, after PSG scored a lone and late goal against Bulgaria the other night, the stadium's lights went out - the game was in Bulgaria, possibly in Sofia - and that ended the game.

The Bulgarians asked for a replay of the whole thing, but the football nabobs decided that PSG could de declared the winner. I think this is a suitable end to the 'Sports Roundup' that isn't supposed to be here anyhow.

Today's first new members arrive about one minute before the meeting's official beginning, but they are accepted as 'new' members anyway - because I am sure they might be the only members present.

After all, it is nice outside, after that awful rain yesterday. The new members are Nicole Enderle and Steve Dorland, from Erie, Colorado. To their surprise, I declare Erie to be the 'City of the Week' without even asking if it is a city. After last week's no 'City of the Week' fiasco I'm taking no chances.

The couple have been celebrating Steve's first trip to Europe, on the occasion of their tenth wedding anniversary, and for this they've come straight from the Oktoberfest in Munich, where Stevephoto: nicole, steve, david, sue, jerry failed to try out one of my former favorite beers, Paulaner. They didn't stay in Munich too long because there are no free hotel rooms within 500 kilometres, which is a well-known quaint European custom during each year's Oktoberfest.

Trick photo captures three out of five new members - sort of.

I do not get a chance to tell them about the bridge that sleeps nine under it up in Schwabing, nor the cellar in the Turkenstraße, before Terri Minami and John Lawton arrive almost a year to the day after their last visit to the club.

And before I can learn much about most transatlantic flights being full at the moment, another couple arrive, saying, "We are the Bumps!" Sure enough they are - Sue and Jerry Bump, who joined the club a few weeks ago.

They are closely followed by Betty and Jerry Blizin, who were at last week's meeting. Hard on their heels is David Leeds, who is a brand-new member today. David lives in Paris, and has done so for a long enough time to not propose some other 'home town.'

David does letter-stuffing for the service organization known as 'WICE,' which used to mean 'Women Interested in Caring for Elephants' but now means 'service.' WICE has a big program of Paris activities, for everybody.

"I've been here a week already and I haven't had an Orangina," John Lawton says, while he orders a coca light. For some reason somebody else is looking at an 'addition' ticket, mumbling, "What's this - what's 52 francs?"

I fear it may be a 'medium' coca but all is well, because they didn't order the 'big' one. By 15:30 a rough count puts the members present total at ten - even though I haven't mentioned that many names here yet. But wait, there's more.

Sally Dilgart wanders in ten minutes later after an extended lunch at the Palais Royal's Grand Véfour, which has four stars and four wine-glass signs. This place used to be known as the Café de Chartres before hastily changing its name to Véfour in 1820.

Sally has thoughtfully brought me another box of Frango mint-chocolates from Chicago, with premature Halloween designs on them.

Well, hmm. There are mentions of sharks in the Gulf of Mexico and bears in Colorado, as well as coyotes in Florida - and some agreement that wild animals are tired of being pushed around, and want to retire where the action is.

Other than this, Nicole thinks it is very humid here - compared to Colorado. Somebody says, "Heavens to murg," and while I try to find out what this means, the members say another 500 or 1000 words, easily outpacing my capacity to record them here.

Cheryl Sylvester and Richard Miller make a reurn appearance after a year's absence. They have droppedphoto: frango in today, before going on to the Loire valley where there is more sanity than in Paris.

For 'Frango' details, see one of the year-old club 'reports.'
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