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Happy Birthday Jerry Lee

photo, citroen ds, etoile

A Citroën DS glides around the Etoile on Sunday.

Sharks On the Champs

by Ric Erickson

Paris:– Monday, 10. October 2005:– I will tell you what disturbed me about tonight's TV–weather news forecast. When it came on I turned to the maps on the back page of Le Parisien and they weren't there. There was no time, I couldn't find them, so I grabbed a sheet of paper – a electro bill – and made notes.

Usually I scribble right on the maps, drawing lines for possible fronts, discarding TV's fictions and substituting them with my own hunches and ignorant guesswork, and I do it by the TV's weak light. When I come to write my scientific opinion, I metamorphose the paper's maps with my latest scribbles, draw the conclusions, spit in the wind, and whine about what the weather lady was wearing.

Tonight I have this sheet without maps and maps without scribbles on them. Are you ready? Tuesday will begin by being mostly sunny with clouds and then it will evolve into being only partly sunny, perhaps with more clouds. Winds from the southeast were shown, but these may only be offshore and nothing to worry about even if only mild. The temperature is expected to be 20 degrees but if it is like today, it may be 22.

On Wednesday it will probably, according to TV, be cloudy all day long. If you want sunny you'll have to go out to the far western tip of Brittany and hope real hard. Expect a temperature of about 19 degrees for some reason.

Thursday is really sketchy. According to my scribbles there will be sunny periods up along the Channel, perhapsphoto, fountain, concorde being blown ashore by a 60 kph wind from the northwest. I don't know if these bits of sun will get this far. The weather lady stood in from of her map while telling us the saint's name for tomorrow, but you aren't interested in that because it's not Thursday. I guess the real news is that the high is only expected to be 16 degrees. So what? It's October after all.

On of the fountains at Concorde.

Our valued weather ace, Météo Jim over there in autumn's Pommeland, is far from lost at the moment. Jim has sent a new and extremely musical report from which I've clipped the prediction:

Tammy, Tammy, Tammy

Tropical storm Tammy began her visit on Friday, and as of Monday morning, had left 4.5 anglo–inches of rain – about 12 euro–mini–metres – around the heart of Pommeland. But she liked western Pommeland more – dumping about 12 anglo–inches or 30 euro–minis – and absolutely showered her affection on parts of New England, also known as La Nouvelle Angleterre where many Nouveau Français from La Nouvelle France had moved. This is not to be confused with Le Beaujolais Nouveau which will come pouring out next month. Parts of Nouvelle Angleterre received over two anglo–pieds – 60 euros – of rain and looked more like Nouvelle Orléans.

The rocker Jerry Lee Lewis and his refrain 'Great Balls of Fire!' have been banished to an obscure corner of Mount Parnasse by the remnants and descendants of Tropical Storm Tammy. However, clouds, rain and temperatures in the mid to upper 60's – 17–20 euro grad – will grace Pommeland until the weekend.

Since Météo Jim has raised the issue, you should check out the world's first Bavarian Web site to feature the 70 year old star of the rock piano, or step over to Snowbell Street in Munich to find out what's happening next at the Rattlesnake Saloon..

Café Life

Sharks On the Champs

I should have gone to see the DS parade even if it was darn early in the morning. The weather was clear, it was warm and still. I thought, oh, another big event on the Champs–Elysées. It is two–thirds as wide as a football field is long and it's very long. Put in 1600photo, champs elysees DS' sliding down it and what have you got? The Champs–Elysées part of their parade wasn't even shown on the TV–news. I can't trust them with anything.

After the DS parade, the usual Sunday mob out in force.

So I finally got up there, probably about three hours later, figuring that some of these DS crazies would be taking Sunday drives. A lot of people do – come in at Concorde and sweep around the Obélisque and hit the avenue with its super long view up to the Arc, and roll up there and twirl around the Etoile in the sunshine – you can go around as often as you want – it's free. And then peel off into the top of the avenue and nearly coast all the way back to Concorde, using the Obélisque as the gunsight blade behind the doodad on the hood.

Meanwhile, a quarter–million folks were on the sidewalks, one on the sunny side and the other in the shade. Most of the shops were closed but all the cinemas, restaurants and cafés were open and many have terraces even on the shady side. Plus Louis Vuitton was having a gala opening at George V – with Sharon Stone, Uma Thurman, Winona Ryder among the VIPs and 2000 other glitzer volk, not forgetting the ever–presentphoto, snack kiosk, champs elysees Catherine Deneuve of course. In the evening only the newly renovated Petit Palais was good enough for the ball, possibly because the newly renovated Grand Palais across the street was full of some other grand promo.

Catching a snack on the Champs– Elysées.

When you get to the Rond–Point you leave the 'famous' Champs Elysées for the rest, which is equally long and wide, but is flanked by wide paths and lines of trees. In these are ritzy pavilions, parks, theatres and the palaces, the Petit and Grand. The used stamp market is in here and there are rustic snack kiosks, toilets, and it is a long park on either side of the avenue, with the leaves going brown at the moment, littering the ground with golden petals like lucky pieces.

The avenue ends, or begins, at the Place de la Concorde. This is a big stone place with an island in the middle with the Obélisque sticking up and two fountains, one of the seas and the other of rivers. Folks making the trek from the Tuileries on the other side stop to inspect the gilt diagrams on the Obélisque – how to raise an Obélisque! – and wonder about the sexual aspects of the spouting fountain figures with the fish tails.

You could say that Concorde with its Obélisque and Etoile with its Arc form a unit joined by the Champs–Elysées. The whole affair is a singularly rich and uniqu experience several kilometres long and very large, enough for quite a wide attention span.


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