...Continued from page 1

The Amnesty

In anticipation of the presidential amnesty that the newly elected, or re-elected, president routinely accords by way of a favorable vote by a joyful and elected or re-elected parliament, drivers are busily collecting their parking tickets and holding off on paying the fines.

On the other side of the fence, in anticipation of a possible amnesty, tax collection offices have stepped up their procedures to collect the unpaid fines.

This year they even have a new weapon. The various branches of the Trésor Publique are dipping directly into the bank accounts of illegal parkers and taking what they think is due to them without issuing much in the way of warnings or threats.

Normally it takes six to eight months for dire warnings to be issued by Trésor Publique.

Several of the presidential candidates are opposed to any amnesty, while others are willing to tolerate an amnesty limited to unpaid parking tickets. At this date the Prime Minister has been silent on the subject, while Le Parisien says that the President is being 'evasive.'

More Info About Euros

All prices within the euro-zone countries in Europe are now posted in euros, just as if you are visiting one foreign country with a bunch of different names - all having a common currency you have never seen before.

Details about trading in old francs for euros appeared in earlier issues. For additional information concerning deadlines for cash, cheques and other tips, hit this link.

Some More Common Euro Prices
  • 1euro 3 sign - is the going rate for two games of pinball
  • 2euro 3 sign - is the going rate for 5 games of pinball
  • 8842.05euro 3 sign - is what a new Renault Twingo will set you back
  • 45.60euro 3 sign - is what an oil change will cost for it
  • 42.25euro 3 sign - is the toll for using the autoroute from Paris to Marseille
  • 5.15euro 3 sign - for a 'menu' of a burger, frites, with a medium coca
  • 6.70euro 3 sign - might be the price of a cinema ticket
  • 0.80euro 3 sign - is what a copy of Le Parisien will cost on a weekday
  • 30.00euro 3 sign - will get you a snazzy French toaster

The above figures represent 'about' prices, gathered from a booklet printed before reality set in. Expect prices to be slightly above or below in real life.

Paris Public Transport - In Euros

Here are some new public transport prices, which will be posted in euros, and in francs for those trying to unload them. These prices are really real:-

  • 1.30euro 3 sign - for a single métro/bus ticket
  • 9.30euro 3 sign - for a 'carnet' of 10 tickets
  • 13.25euro 3 sign - for a weekly 2-zone Orange card*
  • 44.36euro 3 sign - for a monthly 2-zone Orange card
  • 5euro 3 sign - for a one-day 2-zone Mobilis card
  • 8.35euro 3 sign - for a one-day 2-zone 'Paris Visite' card
  • 13.70euro 3 sign - for a two-day 2-zone 'Paris Visite' card
  • 7.60euro 3 sign - for a one-way Roissy-Rail ticket, to or from the airport
  • All of Paris is included within '2-zones' - which are called zones 1 and 2. In the Paris transport region there are eight zones. Weekly or monthly tickets can be purchased for any combination of 'zones.'
Internet Life

I don't know why, but the folks who work for Alain Ducasse decided I needed a New Years card. For being this thoughtful, it is probably worth mentioning that Monsieur Ducasse seems to have a cooking school about which I know absolutely nothing. Bonne Année!

It is winter in the mountains somewhere outside of Paris. If the northern Alps area seems tempting, you can find out more about them from the Alps-Sensations Web site.

For general high-altitude thrills, I think Hiver.Com has had plugs here in past years, without them ever sending me a New Years card to ensure that I put one in this year.

Winter Weather Alerts

This service from our friends at France-Météo gives warnings about near-term violent weather that might be dangerous to your health, or, on a lesser scale, cause you some discomfort if you happen to be at sea without an anchor or up a snowy mountain without a flask.

On the mountain front, you should be aware that this year's crop of snow is not plentifulphoto: bookshop, rue grands augustins so far. According to TV-news reports, avalanches are just waiting to happen to those they haven't already happened to. 'No-go' areas are 'no-go.'

Paris, with its ample 15 degrees and generally light breezes does not qualify as a 'dangerous weather' area. It is not even an exciting weather area. The alert service is mainly for central, eastern and southern arras of France that regularly have more extreme weather than the Ile-de-France region.

Ah, browsing in bookshops - where is my almanac?

If you are curious or want to know more about France's winter weather, give the Météo-France Web site a hit, for its short-range forecasts. The warning-prone 'Vigilance-Météo' area is on the page's top left.

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