Disconnected from Earth

photo, start, friday night rando, montparnasse Yellow mob about to launch on its 'roller rando.'

Do Not Adjust Your Set

by Ric Erickson

Paris:– Monday, 22. May 2006:– Instead of having ten minutes of commercials, tonight's TV–weather news started before they finished. I dropped the pot back in the sink and I dashed to my météo position in front of the tube, my soapy hands grabbing the dedicated Bic weather–news pen awkwardly, but the satellite image was already gone.

It probably was a real twirler too. The winds are still here and they showed an arrow right smack over Paris, and gave it 50 kph for a velocity. This is from the southwest and they stuck another arrow out at the entry to the Channel, blowing straight east, also at 50 kph. Then, the cloud that is to be a small annoyance for Brittany in the morning turns into a general cloud covering all of northwest France in the afternoon.

photo, sky, flagA windy sky in Paris.

To be frank this is not altogether positive, but the real insult comes from the temperature department. We are not supposed to cringe with a sub–normal overnight low of 9 degrees, with a top–out of 15 in the afternoon. Le Parisien calls Tuesday Le mois de l'escargot. It says snails love this weather because it reminds them of November.

The TV must of had many more commercials to run tonight because this is where the weather news ended. Wednesday and Thursday just don't matter. Le Parisien shows Wednesday being mostly sunny with clouds, with a high of 15, and their map for Thursday has sopping rain clouds for the entire northern half of France, albeit with a bit more warmth.

Even though I don't trust Internet weather I would have turned to this source because Le Parisien's forecasting may be accurate enough for les escargots but it is hardly trustworthy for human beans. But, alas, I am not getting any action with access to Wanadoo. Could it have anything to do with this 'historic provider' sending me messages all weekend, announcing their change of name to Orange? They said, "Do not adjust your set," and Il y a rien à faire!

How right they are! The 'net is cut off from me.

Weather Breaks a Leg

Across the great ditch weather news comes from Météo Jim, exclusively for Metropole. There is a possibility that it's also unique, in the sense if you read it here, it may never happen. But just in case here is, totally accurate, Météo Jim's fresh forecast for the week:–

Weather forecasters are not sure how Barbaro breaking his leg in the Preaknesswill affect the weather or the upcoming hurricane season. In the meantime, Pommeland has been experiencing April weather instead of May blossoms. A persistent low pressure area that stretched from the Mississippi River to Nova Scotia is finally moving into the Atlantic and traveling to Paris Plage, just in time for les soldes d'été. Cool, dry weather with temperatures in the low–to–mid 40s at night will warm to the low–to–mid 70s as the week goes on while scattered clouds will alternately cast shadows and allow sunbeams to warm the land of Pommes.

This coming weekend is Memorial Day, the unofficial start of summer in Greater, Lesser and Extended Pommeland. As of now, next Sunday might see temperatures in the low 80s.

photo, tempest warning The sign says, "Closed on account of tempest."

In the meantime, Météo Jim is taking a vacation next week and will not be available to report on the start of the hurricane season, much less the weather. He is going to a distant land without the support of WiFi, Internet or computer to experience nature as nature intended it to be, with live bugs, without fake spam. So, here is his prediction for the end of May and the start of June. We will have weather which, if it doesn't change, then the same weather will continue. See previous editions of Metropole for all the usual disclaimers.

Disclaimer:– the 'I' and the 'we' above is Météo Jim and not 'Ed' or the club's secretary, and if Météo Jim intends to leave his Pommeland weather station in the lurch, that is his own onions. –'Ed'

Café Life

Parisians are Freebie–crazy

Some club members have passed on remarks about the weather features in Metropole, and it has been kind of them to do so. The modest forecasts are entirely for the benefit of readers and club members who read the magazine occasionally. At no time do I get joy from doing them. Far better I think, to do it as before – watch the TV– the night before and hope for the best the following day.

Many observant readers have probably noticed that I seldom apologize for erroneous predictions and forecasts. I don't do so because I have little faith in tomorrow's prediction and none at all for the long term – say, Wednesday and Thursday. The weather is very changeable here. It usually comes from the mid–Atlantic but sometimes it comes from Greenland and occasionally it comes from Scandinavia. Even African weather gets here one in a while.

photo, rue de rivoli, traffic The upscale portion of the rue de Rivoli.

You know all this I guess, and you don't blame me. On Saturday we had the Nuit des Musées. This coincided with the grand reopening of the Orangerie in the Tuileries, which was treating everybody to free entries on account of being unfree and closed for ten years.

I live here so I know how these things work. In effect, on Saturday, there would have been a double, or triple – free and open at night, also free – so I went there in the afternoon to 'beat the crowds' because Parisians really like cultural freebies and will willingly mob them. Who can blame them?

So I looked at my clock and I calculated that no Parisians would be there because they were having Saturday lunch, but myself I had my Saturday café so I couldn't possibly get there then. After, of course, folks were supposed to be shopping – it's Saturday afternoon, isn't it? What happened, I guess, is that a lot of people ate short fast lunches early and did some fancy speed shopping.

Anyway, there I was at Concorde on Saturday afternoon, nearly jogging up a huge number of Métro stairs, practically out of breath on reaching the stone surface. The first thing I noticed were some casual idlers reading notices tacked to the iron railing three–metre–high fence of the Tuileries. Before I could get close enough to read I saw the iron padlocks and ships' anchor chains holding the fence shut.

Did I notice it was windy? Did I think it was windy enough to be classed as a tempest? No both times. But the keepers of the Tuileries had another opinion. The folks gathered further along outside the entry to the Orangerie were reading the notices, in French only, and muttering darkly in many other languages. In case we didn't see the notices or the stout locks and chains, there was a sizeable hired goon behind the iron fence. He was standing far enough away, to discourage questions or heckling, but close enough to repel climbers. The dogs were probably nearby but out of sight.

photo, rue derivoli, statue jeanna d'arcFree Joan of Arc draws a small crowd.

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