New, Exciting 'First of the Week'

photo: 13 members, incl 2 dogs

Today's members, not doing the club's trademarked
'yé-yé' kick.

Extinct Volcano Explains Paris Visit

Paris:- Thursday, 18. April 2002:- If it is club day for Metropole readers who are in Paris, and this is because it is Thursday again, and I don't understand why anybody would want to know what the weather is like.

However, as a responsible club secretary, and the person designated by 'Ed' to reply to letters - sample, "Tell me what the weather will be like on Thursday, 13. June, please!" - because, ha-ha, the writer intends to go to the races at Longchamp - well 'Ed' cannot reply with accuracy because today is not 13. June, is it?

No, the best that can be done is explain what the weather is doing today, even though we - if 'we' are more than just the club's secretary - will be under cover inside La Corona's 'grande salle' having a Café Metropole Club meeting.

For those who were outside in Paris today instead, or on the way to the meeting, it was about 15 degrees of the type that are common in the European area of the world, and whenever I tried to take a photo it was cloudy. When I wasn't trying, it was partly sunny. Around evening time it began to rain, weakly.

Tonight's TV-weather news has said it will be the same tomorrow too, and on Saturday, evenphoto: todays good stuff though yesterday's weather-guy was making big, and sunny promises for Saturday. It's a lucky thing the TV-weather people never run for elected office.

La Corona provides Barbara's 'Délice of the Week.'

I know about the photos and the clouds too because on the way to the club, I went two-thirds of the way across the Pont Neuf to photograph the Vert Galant park on the tip of the Ile de la Cité, and sunshine was not making its spring leaves bright green when I was ready to shoot.

This alone was probably enough to change Saturday's forecast. I'm sorry I tried to do it now. I was counting just as much as anybody on Saturday's weather being nice.

With the miserable future out of the way, I now intend to concentrate the rest of this report on today, the present, the happy here and now - more or less like any other 'club report.'

On entering La Corona, Patrick does not say 'le monde' is waiting in the club's area. Barbara and James Leighton from Portland, Oregon, had arrived at the un-club hour of 14:00 and had wisely used the time before the meeting to have lunch.

This they are finishing up with a 'délice' just as I roll up. The first thing they do, is tell me they came yesterday to the club meeting too.

And, on the way from Portland, they took advantage of a little layover between planes, to spend 12 hours in Dallas - thus making their first trip to Paris in their lifetimes about as long as it takes to get here from New Zealand.

It means, if it means anything, that Paris is worth getting to. They have come to the club meeting today after taking inventory on two of the Pompidou's many floors. They have seen all sorts of art they didn't particularly like in books, looking good in real life.

Barbara has especially appreciated the art centre's interior decor, its trick colors and its graphics - plus its artworks of course. The couple are going back there to see the rest of it.

In fact, James says, "I've invested the past five years in studying Paris for this trip." Tophoto: tea pot, cups ease this along, to get their money's worth - not just in lengthy flight times - they've got five-day museum passes and they intend to wring every cent of worth out of them, and skip all exceedingly long waiting lines in the process.

Even in Paris, some members prefer tea.

There have been so many new members from Oregon lately that I am sorry to tell them Portland isn't going to be the 'City of the Week.' But Barbara says they live on the flanks of an extinct volcano in Portland called Mont Tabor. I am sure this is good enough the become the 'Extinct Volcano of the Week,' and is a worthy major 'first' too if I'm not mistaken.

Then a gentleman joins the club by sitting down at one of the club's tables. I say 'gentleman' because he is wearing a sportjacket and a tie, which he removes when I mention it before I can photograph it. It could have been the 'Tie of the Week,' and everybody knows we have haven't had one of these for years.

Howard Simmons is from Toronto, which he does not tell me until much later, because he is waiting for his wife, Joyce, and three friends, Marie-Renée Hector, Linda Acker and Charlie the dog.

Instead he says, "Pittsburgh has a very nice airport." He probably says this because Jamesphoto: patrick, waiter of the week has claimed that Paris' Charles-de-Gaulle was not tidy or spiffy on Monday.

When I say it looked okay ten days ago, James admits not sleeping for 12 hours in a Dallas hotel on the way here, which may have affected his vision. The Leightons have since had time to see their hotel between Bastille and the Gare de Lyon, have great breakfasts in it, and walk all over the place from it.

If Patrick wasn't 'Waiter of the Week' he could become a regular club member like Dinny and Fred.

One of the Moyer members, the Dinny one, arrives with her friends, members Mary Kvitashvili, and Scrumpy - who became a member last year on 23. August and whose name is spelled correctly this time.

Scrumpy, who is seven times smaller than Charlie, does not go near the larger dog because it appears to sleep through the whole meeting - except during the 'Group Photo of the Week' time.

If this sequence seems wrong it is because a whole slew of members and new members arrive nearly all together. These include Joyce Simmons, Marie-Renée Hector, Charlie the dog, Linda Acker, Irene and Walter Pappas, and Fred Faure, who is wearing a suit but not a tie.

My notes do not explain why I would want to plastify my signature, but somebody says Lord Byron had his done near some dungeon near Geneva after he was jailed there by an angry bishop, with the quote - is it a 'Quote of the Week?' - "Even my chains and bounds became friends."

With high-class quotes like this one nobody can say this club is completely silly. And it seems as if I forgotten to point out that Patrick is a very able 'Waiter of the Week' too.

Dinny is a fund of important information this week too. When she gets to hang around hairdressing salons for hours on end she reads 'Elle' to pass the time - and picks up tips such as suggestions to download the Aubade 'Screensaver of the Week.' These are supposed to perk up French husbands' interest in their wives.

To me, this doesn't sound scientific. How could a screensaver, even one of Aubade's, be better than aphoto: group at tables French wife? Dinny, who must have studied the subject thoroughly, says Aubade uses only two models and the bottom one is Brazilian. The top one, is overage at 24, and Aubade is looking for a younger model.

Full of members - today's club area in the café Corona.

While Claudio singing operas in his hairdressing salon may be more cultural, I decide not to tell him the latest news about Aubade. It's hard enough to get a haircut there, and besides, his shop doesn't have 'Elle.'

To get the 'Group Photo of the Week' a great deal of furniture needs to be displaced just to get everybody up. The effort is so great I decide to skip the terrace as a photo location.

Sure enough, although a lot of light is coming into the café's 'grande salle,' half of today's members turn out to be in a shadow. Everybody forgets to do the club's own trademark 'yé-yé' kick because I forget to ask for it.

By the time everybody sits down again, the meeting's time period is over. But before you know it, about ten minutes after I finish writing this 'report,' it will be Thursday again. Whoever made the calendar, I thank them for not giving it two Thursdays in a week.

The Coming Meeting

The next weekly meeting of the Café Metropole Club will be on Thursday, 25. April. This will be a fairly ordinary 17th Thursday in the year 2002 - backwards it is '2002' - a kind-of-day named after Saint-Marc - which may be a holiday in Italy if everybody isn't already on strike there.

The address for this meeting is close to the end of this page, proceeded or followed by all the date and time and multiple métro-stop names, which have been exactly the same for years, almost like this paragraph, which is actually shorter this week.

The 'About the Café Metropole Club' Page

Learning something about this club could convince you to attend a meeting for the mild thrill of it, so you can do this by reading 'About the Café Metropole Club.' This page explains nearly everything you need know about this club - very little - and its meetings - only a tiny little bit more.

If you feel like skipping this 'About' page - there are 'no rules' after all - all you really need know is that you can easily become a member of this online magazine's live, free and real club by simply coming to a meeting when you are in Paris.

Date, Time and Location of the Coming Meeting

Every Thursday meeting of this club in Paris begins at 15:00 and continues until 17:00 in Europe'sphoto: wine pots, glasses Central European Time Zone - which is 'CET' for short and not 'POTP' - and known elsewhere as 3 pm to 5 pm in worldwide zones without metric 24-hour 'Eurotime.'

The club's secretary will be making some great effort to record 'report' notes during the meeting. This will require no effort on your part. Note your hometown's name and your own email address for reference if you tend to forget them.

Tea is fine - but in Paris so is wine.

Come with a new 'Quote of the Week' or propose your own 'City of the Week' or even be prepared to mention any other original 'Things of the Week' such as your local volcanos if you want to see them in a 'club report' associated with your name. 'No-names' is optional. Otherwise and in general, the only exception is 'no rules.'

Everything you say will be treated with great respect and really appreciated by the other members present, if they seem to be listening instead of talking - and by all readers of this online magazine, if they happen to read them - if they chance to be written here.

The café's location is:

Café-Tabac La Corona
2. Rue de l'Amiral de Coligny - or - 30. Quai du Louvre
Paris 1. Métro: Louvre-Rivoli, Pont-Neuf or Châtelet.
Every Thursday from 15:00 to 17:00.

A bientôt à Paris
signature, regards, ric

Send email concerning the
contents to: Ric Erickson, Editor.
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