...Continued from page 1

photo, sitters, steps of opera Looks like folks sitting at the Opéra because they are.

Facts are getting slippery. Montmartre is full of holes. I can remember that, just like gulb. I told Willy the first bit was uphill. When we got past the vineyard and Utrillo's house, I told him all the rest was downhill because it is. We went and looked at the view from in front of the church. While we were looking, absolutely nothing happened to it. Beaubourg was where it always is.

It seemed like there are fewer artists in the place du Tertre. All of the surrounding café terraces have expanded, leaving just a few painters on the fringes. Waiters from some cafés were wearing costumes, totally fake. Maybe Disney has taken it over without putting up a sign. We went down an alley and looked at the view again, then skipped the Dali shop. Around the corner I told Willy that Utrillo painted the unlikely café, the Swiss something or other. He said less than nothing.

photo, big doll at saint germain The big Dutch doll.

He perked up when I pointed out a windmill on the way down, past the Chi't painted on a wall. We came out at Lepic and followed it down and around, to the tabac there. We got a table and had a drink, sitting in the sun, not a care in the world. It wasn't the worst place in the world to sit for a half hour.

After, the rest of the way down Lepic, to place Blanche and down through the 9th all the way to Haussmann and around to the Opéra and inside for a look at the marble and gilding, but it was mostly closed off. Some construction outside blocked the vue down the avenue just like it does in New York. We went through Vendôme and eyeballed Cartier and the Ritz, trying to spot the spooks.

The Tuileries were very quiet except for the cars racing along Rivoli. We passed the pool, the Carrousel, and took a pause on one of the stone benches in the Cour Napoléon. Did I remember to tell him it was the Cour Napoléon? No, I think I merely said that we'd come two–thirds of the way. In the Cour Carée I pointed out where the original Louvre had been. There's no sign of it. I told him about the other part that isn't there anymore – Marie's castle. Most folks don't wonder about it because they've never heard of it.

photo, obama poster, l'express, will Something a little different.

On the Pont des Arts I pointed out my bridge. It's looking really good since its renovation. We battled our way up the rue de Seine to the boulevard and went along there to Saint–Germain where some folks were erecting a huge, white, Dutch girl doll. Willy was cool – he didn't ask what it was. Angry artists, I suppose. It's springtime, artists are out pulling capers.

Then we got on the métro and went to my Monoprix. Willy got all his supplies for his return trip, and I helped carry them up rue Daguerre. We got some bread for breakfast, or would have if the bakery had not been closed. I must have got it elsewhere.

That's what I do when I don't do Paris. I drive a bus. I have done it often and I have the whole thing memorized. It is always supposed to be a bit longer, a bit further, than is comfortable. The last thing you would want to do is try and march all the way up the rue de Rennes to Montparnasse. Because if you did, then it's just a bit further to Daguerre. But that last bit is a killer.

photo, sign, place st ferdinand

On Friday I went with Willy to Porte Maillot where he caught the bus to that ramshackle airport out at Beauvais. He called it a rickshaw airport. He said it was in a tent or something. He was worried that they would charge him for overweight baggage. I heard later that he turned around in Dublin in two minutes and was out the door to somebody's 21st birthday. His is next year.

Whispers, Rumors, White Fibs

This popular feature which began recently and was dumped last week gets an update this week. Pay close attention. The unions and the employer's confederation have been discussing reforms with the government. After listening carefully and weighing all the options, the government decided to ignore both groups and proposed its own list of 60 modifications to the Code du Travail. Therefore the unions are calling for a massive strike on Tuesday, 17. June, to oppose the plan to dismantle the 35–hour work week, allowing employers to insist on up to 48 hours, without overtime pay.

photo, fiat 500, sitting, rue lepicFiat 500 of the Week, sitting too.

There was other news too. The problem with it is it's still going on. The fishermen are still mostly on strike, blocking ports, trashing supermarkets and giving TV interviews. Truck drivers are getting into the act with escargot convoys and some fuel depots are being blockaded. Teachers and students are still sore about plans to cut staffs. Taxi drivers are annoyed and so are motorcyclists. Nobody is cheering for increased TV fees. A lot of citizens are worried about 36 different issues. The government is inventing more thorny knots, as if there weren't enough. In short, things are completely normal in France, if a bit complicated. That's normal too.

photo, sign, rue villapet de joyeuse

Soldes d'Eté Déjà

If you've already read this, squeak. Like the annual winter sales, the summer sales happen without fail. This is scheduled to happen even without any summer. In fact, the less summer there is, the more great stuff there will be on sale. However since the terrific goods on sale are priced in euros your possible savings might be slight. The sales will begin on Wednesday, 25. June, and the wild shopping times roll on until 2. August.

The Olden Café Metropole Club

Club meetings with a miniscule passel of members are fine with me. Last week there we were, à deux. Other members and new candidates are welcome too. The next Thursday that everything at the Café Metropole Club will be 100% new, will be on 5. June, a few days before and after nothing special. All members–in–any form, any standing, of any sort will be welcome even if you feel like waiting for your refund.

Repetition here is rumored to end someday but wafts on forever. Three dubious facts and seven false rumors about the club are on a page called the About the Club Webpage. Readers who have actually read it, and one or two may have, may become club members without personal risk or other fees.

photo, sign, rue de la mire, chit, merde

The Ex–Question of Schleswig–Holstein

Some of you have might have been thinking that it is appropriate to recall that it was today in 455 that the Vandals began plundering, destroying, murdering, raping and sacking Rome for two weeks, because it was there. They did this because they were running away from the Goths, the Marcomanni, the Hermanduri and the truly nasty Hister folks of the Danube branch. Pope Leo the Great asked Vandal leader Geiseric to be satisfied with mere pillage. On the same day in 1953 a young lady named Elizabeth was crowned as Queen of Great Britain and Northern Ireland in Westminster Abbey, and she still is. This was the same day as the birth, in 1740 of Donatien Alphonse François de Sade, known to his close friends as Marquis de Sade. On a sadder note today marks the death of Hristo Botev, national Bulgarian hero, in 1876. Other than P. T. Barnum beginning his first circus tour of the United States today in 1835, that's our little world, folks!

A bientôt à Paris
signature, regards, ric

Go to page : 1 - 2
In Metropole Paris
Latest Issue
2008 Issues
2007 | 2006 | 2005
2004 | 2003 | 2002
2001 | 2000 | 1999
1998 | 1997 | 1996
In Metropole Paris
About Metropole
About the Café Club
Links | Search Site
The Lodging Page
Paris Museums List
Metropole's 1996 Tours
Metropole's 2003 Tours
Support Metropole
Metropole's Books
Shop with Metropole
Metropole's Wine
metropole paris goodblogweek button
Send email concerning the
contents to: Ric Erickson, Editor.
Metropole Midi © 2014
– unless stated otherwise.
logo, metropole sml midi logo No matter how good it tastes,
there is no such thing
as a free lunch.
Waldo Bini