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Countdown To Bastille Day

photo, third stage of tour eiffel, top, sightseers The sky's the limit at the top of the Tour Eiffel.

Who Is Counting?

by Ric Erickson

Paris:– Monday, 7. July:–  I feel drowsy, sleepy, very sleepy. It is that wonderful time of year when the TV–news regales us with hard news stories about poison cheese – please, in Italy!pétanque tournaments in Marseille, the utter delights of camping at the five–stars, the frisky sailors of the Armada at Rouen and by no means least or last, the three week saga of the Tour de France. Oh yes, I forgot the festivals, at Avignon, or Aix–en–Provence, where they present new versions of old Mozart – with real spacey staging in a chic Roman ruin. It makes me dozy, this endless summer interrupted only by minor winters.

Interrupted for Minor Winter

It just goes to show that once July is here those of us who are pretending that we are on vacation in Paris can throw away our suntan juice because even if the sun shines one or twice a day it is so cold that it would freeze on our goosebumped skins. So, tonight, the first thing the weather chickie said on the TV–weather news was that there is a beautiful anticyclone in our future. So wait, don't rush off, there's more:

photo, golden statue, palais de chaillot, trocadero The Lady of Chaillot.

Not better but more. It must be a feeble high, lurking off the northwest coast of Ireland, afraid to show its face. The best it gets us on Tuesday will be cloudy to maybe slightly semi–sunny, with a rock–bottom high of 20. Wednesday might be more like it, maybe being half sunny in the daytime, and maybe with 23 degrees at 14:12. Then on Friday this collapses into mainly cloudy. If it's any comfort the temperature may be 25, again at 14:12.

Every error, correctly spelled, by Météo Jim is a tribute to his powers of heavenly observation from flat on his back in his backyard in New Jersey. Here is Jim's latest up–to–date version of how it will be in and around greater Pommeland:–

A Plague of Muggies

As the glorious, extended Fourth of July weekend comes to a close, cloudy skies and thunderdonnerboomenohrengesplitten storms and firecrackers serenaded Pommeland, it's time to look at the week to come.

photo, sign, flamiche aux poireaux

The jet stream has moved to its usual summer location. It is straddling the US – Canadian border and is blowing from west to east in an almost straight line without any bumps or dips. This means that weather patterns will zip across the country without spending a couple of weeks in Lodgepole, Nebraska. But, since the jet stream is north of Pommeland, that means that the muggies from the south will be allowed to come north and stay – and stay – and stay.

So, the weather pattern from last week will prevail for the new week. Hot, muggy and a chance of thunderboomendonnerohrengesplitten storms every afternoon with highs in the upper 80s. The price of gas will keep many people from traveling to the beach or other cooler spots. They will stay where they are and simmer, thus adding to the muggies.

However, those lucky enough to be in Paris beginning July 21 will see the opening of Paris Plage which should not be confused with Paris Plague, not even Prague Plague.

A la prochaine, Météo Jim

Café Life

photo, second stage, tour eiffel, great outlook Stage two for the elevated.

On the Way To This Issue

Last Tuesday was the best day of the summer so far but last Tuesday was barely in July so it might not have counted. All the same I went to Trocadéro to capture hot folks on a frolic on the pool in the garden there. They were there but the high times were slight because the MGT. had rented the place to tented merchants for some sort of commerce and the water cannons were dry and other fountains dorment. Paddlers and waders there were, but barely capable of a feeble splish–splash.

Otherwise it was a great day and the blue sky was a mile high, with the Tour Eiffel sticking up in it like an upsidedown ice cream cone. Nothing anybody hasn't seen before but last Tuesday exceptionally clear – especially for the thousands waiting for an elevator ride up, to the first, second or top floors, where the curve of earth may have been visible – or maybe the Alps. However unlike New York, with its four waterfalls along the East River, our tower was dry and there were no aquatic scenes to capture.

photo, balcony, palais de chaillot, view of lower tour eiffel View from the cheap seats.

Then it got cloudy and cooler. I got more and more lethargic, until tonight when I thought I would watch a few minutes of Rocco and His Brothers and ended up watching the whole thing and I'm glad I did because it was a wonderful Visconti movie from 1960. If you get a chance to see it, don't miss it. It has a terrific scene showing the Alfa Romeo smokestack in Milan.

The result is this issue, the one you have in your very hands. I have put in the tower photos and I hope they all fit around these few words. The rest of what was intended fell by the wayside.

photo, sign, metropolitain

The Imperfect Café Metropole Club

Club meetings with a few members are fine with me just so long as half of them aren't knitting. Doesn't knitting make you nervous? Regular members and new candidates are welcome, so come on time. The next Thursday that everything at the Café Metropole Club will be 107% new, will be on 10. July, a few days before next weekend's fabulous Bastille Day parade. All members–in–any form, any standing, of any sort will be welcome even if you feel like watching the Foreign Legion dudes march down the Champs–Elysées next Monday.

The rumor that repetition here will end someday is totally meritless. Three dubious facts and four true 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 already be club members without personal risk or other exorbitant fees.

photo, sign, pamplemouse rose candy

The Ex–Question of Schleswig–Holstein

Some of you have might have been thinking that it is appropriate to remember that it was today in 1456 that Papal envoys decided that Joan of Arc should have been acquitted of heresy 25 years earlier when she was convicted and burned at the stake. Today also reminded me of a plane crash in 1946 in Beverly Hills. Flying his own prototype Hughes XF–11 the designer Howard Huges lost control and came to earth hard, wrecking some houses and himself, ceasing forever after to be his old jolly self. Also on this date, in 1898, the United States annexed Hawaii without noticing that it was a sovereign country. Robert Heinlein who was born today, said, "Never underestimate the power of human stupidity." Finally, according to Wikipedia, no scientists worth mentioning have been born since 1906 and since 1927 none have died. Everybody else was an athlete, singer, writer, musician, King of Nepal, actor, magician, beauty queen or racing driver. That's our little world, folks!

A bientôt à Paris
signature, regards, ric

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contents to: Ric Erickson, Editor.
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