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Beaujolais Nouveau Day

photo, group, priscilla, heather, mary ann, bettett, david, barbara r, barbara m, john m, bob

The 'Group of the Week' – from left, Priscilla, Heather,
Mary Ann, Bettett, David, Barbara R, Barbara M, John and Bob.

Some 'Senior Moments'

Paris:– Thursday, 18. November 2004:– If I had timbers they would be shivering. I believe there was a sort of heatwave forecast for today that was supposed to give us 12 degrees at the height of the day. Unfortunately there was no 'height' of the day.

The sun is rumored to have come up at 8:06, but there was no proof of it this afternoon. Just some antic breezes blowing around, seemingly from the south. The leaves, if they are still on the trees, are giving up reluctantly.

I have been restraining myself from giving a loud warning about 'orange' weather. This doesn't comephoto, salut bjn from the phone company or Florida. Tonight's TV–weather news lady sounded the gong – hold your hats tonight for winds up to 110 kph, blowing at us from the west.

Technically this is due to a low pressure area over Iceland and a high pressure area – I forget where – and between the two there is the wind creation. But, not to worry – if your hat is loose the winds shouldn't be more than gentle puffs of 60 kph by Friday noon.

The 'Clink of the Week.' Salut!

There should even be sunny periods on Friday, but the temperature is headed for the pits where it will establish itself at about 8 degrees. More semi–sunny times are foreseen for Saturday with a lower high of 7 degrees.

No sun at all is in the cards for Sunday, when the temperature will leap to the stunning heights of 9 degrees. Luckily Paris Plage is closed until next July, but everything else is open.

The 'Beaujolais Nouveau' Club Report of the Year

The sky looks sinister as the wind blows me towards the entry of the Métro. It is a perfect day for a club meeting and a rotten day for a picnic, as most days in November usually are. I am behind with Christmas reporting so I ride all the way to Châtelet in a near empty wagon.

There aren't many lost souls in the Métro tunnels and there seem to be even fewer shoppers on the Rue dephoto, mary ann, hello albert sign Rivoli. There are sales too, of the kind when you buy three bikinis and get a fourth one for 1€. There might be more people around if they were parkas.

I check Samaritaine's windows. They are decorated, but are they Christmas? Same thing happened on Sunday when I snooped out the Bon Marché. It was closed and all the windows were draped with white hangings.

This is what Albert gets for staying home.

Since I've forgotten, I am not in doubt about Beaujolais Nouveau day. But right after the department store I see a sign in a café window. Nobody would put a Beaujolais Nouveau sign in their window if it wasn't Beaujolais Nouveau day Naw, I think, it must really be Beaujolais Nouveau day.

Great. Except that there isn't many people around. Well, oh sure, everybody is inside sopping up the juice. Small wonder the streets are empty. It's eerie though.

The club's café La Corona has six different Beaujolais Nouveau signs in its windows. Nobody is sitting on the arctic terrace through. Inside, in the bar, the café's Joes are wearing straw boaters and wine–spill aprons. Fake grapes are hanging from the lights and there are even more Beaujolais Nouveau signs.

A guy at the bar says, "Take my photo – I work for the Poste." I decline, because he works for the Poste. He says I remind him of an American actor, what's his name. The guy's buddy doesn't try to guess. I can't remember what's his name either. I decline a glass of Beaujolais Nouveau, offered by the Poste. Then the Joe remembers. The what's his name who's dead, unlike me. For this I am offered a café.

At least now it seems like Beaujolais Nouveau day. In the café's 'grande salle' there are more fake grapes and signs hanging from the extravagant lights, but there are so few people that it looks like there's a rumor of plague.

In the club's area there is a couple sitting in a booth behind a pillar. The club's tables are clean and set in perfect order so I rearrange them, and carefully put the particulars in the club's books. As I get out the paper to read it, people arrive.

These are member Barbara Roldan and her friends Mary Ann Planck and Bettett Disney, and all three have come from Novato, California. Barbara was at the New Year's Day meeting this year, but she says, "Albert isn't here this time."

The story is, the three of them were having a bite to eat a month ago, and they decided to come to Paris for the hell of it. Et voilà, here they are!

In order to promote Novato as the 'City of the Week' the ladies tell me they live in the Hamilton part of it. Forphoto, beaujolais nouveau many years, maybe half a century, Hamilton was a US Air Force base. But now it's a suburb, maybe with big runways.

The three have also taken a Segway tour since they arrived. This started from the Tour Eiffel, and, "Bettett crashed," Barbara says. When I ask, Bettett admits she is a 'distant' Disney. First time in Paris and crash a Segway – it seems right.

It looks right. Just smell it.

No Beaujolais Nouveau day is complete without Beaujolais Nouveau, and the 'Waiter of the Week' brings some for Barbara and Mary Ann, and a Coke 'nouveau' for Bettett. One says, "It's very cold," about the wine, which I can smell.

Another couple have settled onto a adjoining table. After listening to fine wine appreciation sounds they introduce themselves as willing to–be club members.

We have then a round of handshakes with Barbara and John Martin from Ayr in Scotland. They have a weekend apartment near Bastille because Ayr is near Prestwick and connects handily to Beauvais, via Ryanair. "Three hours door–to–door, if the connection isn't too good," Barbara says.

Anoher flying connection is good enough for 'City of the Week,' and makes at least two for Scotland. Which heralds the arrival of member David Pitt, born in England, but a long time resident of Yosemite where he had a book store.

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