A Gray Concrete Tomb

photo, park vert galant, ile de la cite The real Paris, ever exceptional.

Under Leaden Skies

by Ric Erickson

Paris:– Monday, 14. April:–  It may not come as a big surprise that I can't think of anything to write this week. Before you holler "writer's block" or "senior moment," or even "thank goodness" – I can watch my Netflix instead! Just think, do you really want the 634th weekly version of Paris in my life? Or of my life in Paris? I mean, isn't this overdoing it a bit? Hasn't anybody had enough? But first, there's the météo:

Lousy, Local, Weather

It just goes to show that life in Paris does go on. For example, around here, events in the sky have stalled between winter and spring, with a bit of a seesaw back and forth. Is spring so terrible? What can't it just do it? C'mon sky, brighten up. C'mon temperature, get up to normal! Is it too much to ask? I know, I know, we go through this ever year at this time. It just does not want to let go – of winter. Was it so wonderful? Not hardly.

photo, statue of stalin, georgia, with nigel Stalin and Nigel, a first for all.

First off, applying to the future three days – temperatures lower than normal. It's not exactly news. On Tuesday we are supposed to expect skies that are not clear, are cloudy, in fact. A temperature of 11 will be the so–called high. Wednesday may be semi–sunny part–time and semi–cloudy the rest. One degree more if you are counting. The brightest day may be Thursday unless the muck from the southwest gets here first. Dancing in the streets for the high of 13 if it happens, depending on the sky.

Although not the famous mountain coot I mentioned here last week, Météo Jim's forecasts are welcome. He has twigged to the new regime, so here is his brief new version of how it will be overseas:–

Taxes Are Good For You

By the time Metropole readers see this, it will be Tax Day in Pommeland, La Grosse Pomme, as well as other parts attached to said and unsaid areas. Will Uncle Sam reward or punish you? Qui sait? On verra!

The weather has been a bit taxing as well. On Thursday and Saturday the temperature rose to 75 a–grad – 23 e–grad, not to be confused with e–gads! On Saturday evening a cool front arrived to fan the fainted brows of Pommelanders. Sunday saw a high of 50 a–grad along with the winds and clouds of winter.

As for the tax–heavy week to come, the temperature will rise to an estimated high of 70 a–grad on Thursday with increasing intervals of sun. Another cool front is predicted by the weekend with highs in the low 60s.

photo, sign, hand with black nails

A la prochaine, Météo Jim

Café Life

A Gray Concrete Tomb

In the old days I used to close my eyes and stick my finger on a map of the city and then I would open my eyes and look at the map to see if it looked like a good place to go to, to look around a take a few photos, and then write a piece about it. Since I had never seen anything and had never been anywhere this method worked fine for about ten years.

It wouldn't work these days. Close my eyes and poke my finger at a map? Well, okay, why not? It's been a long time since I've looked around La Défense. Boy, that used to be a place! All those glittery towers out there, full of the high–tech future – software, computers, gadgets, silicon hustlers – does anybody remember Web–TV?

photo, uninteresting view of la defense Glorious and swinging, La Défense.

They had cameras and equipment and studios you could use, and they would take what you made and put it on Web–TV, and it was all free. The demo didn't work too well though. I went away thinking that I should just keep on learning to do better what I already did. Next thing I heard it was adios Web–TV. That was about four years before uTube.

I lived out that way so I was going through La Défense all the time. For me it was mainly a place to switch from the train to the métro, or get the tram that went to southwest Paris. Back and forth, and every once in a while I'd pause, and take a look at the CNIT and the Fnac there or stop off to cruise a trade show or expo.

I even get, very occasionally, emails asking me whether La Défense is worth a visit. Let's see, there's the Grande Arche at the head of the Esplanade. There are 30 other tall buildings out there full of offices I suppose. For all I really know they are cardboard replicas full of dog biscuits.


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