...Continued from page 1

photo, tree trunk, metal grill Where have the yellow leaves gone?

The Marco Polo fountain was flinging away with lots of spray, so that was my turned-leaf photo there. Further on down, in the Jardin du Luxembourg, the ground was a bit less tidy. Leaves were in piles created by the wind. But there were no big leaves, just shards. Maybe the leaves are rotting off the trees. Just like we don't know where Senators come from the effects of pollution are pretty unclear.

The Senat is also a major exhibitor of palms. In season it has a whole collection of them and they add quite a bit of fantasy to the park. The paths are some special kind of white dirt and the grass is highly manicured and there are some flowers and 500 free metal chairs, plus the pool and terraces and groves and playgrounds for kids and chess wizards, a real Orangerie, a bee farm, and all is watched by national gendarmes, because it's the Senat.

Yes. The palms were a bit faded, but in general they looked pretty green. In fact the whole thing – Marie's old palace – all the loungers around the pool – looked like the grounds of the Hotel Louis XVIX Carlton in Cannes, our little Riviera right here in the frozen north. Without the palms it could have merely been the Hotel Vier Jahreszeiten in Hamburg.

photo, restaurant polidor cremerieA restaurant in the Quartier Latin.

Under the trees a big crew filled the bandstand, making a jazzy big band sound. Much, much better than three electric guitars or Chinese hip–hop pop. Of course the crowd gathered around, in their free chairs, were none of them young enough to own an iPod. The more prosperous ones were spread around the nearby chalet café, sipping tea or quaffing Champagne. Doing the right thing listening to free jazz in the afternoon under a blue sky.

No sense dragging this out. My quest to find big piles of freshly fallen leaves, gold, red, orange, came to nothing. The place is too damn tidy or the leaves themselves are disintegrating before they land on the ground. Another mission unaccomplished. It's a good thing this isn't a football game or a movie.

Speaking of movies, from the north gate of the garden it is only a minor jump to the boulevard Saint–Michel and the discount–used DVD shops. Haven't I said before that I saw no movies for 30 years? I can go to a DVD place and find a movie I haven't seen already with my eyes closed. That's what I did and as soon as this is finished, that's what I'm doing. To hell with old leaves!

photo, sign, allee du chateau ouvrier

The Tap Dance Café Metropole Club

There were no folks, no members and an unknown Waiter of the Week at the last meeting and even with the secretary, we were not a quorum. The report was a pale sham. Nothing made up. The next Thursday that everything at the Café Metropole Club will be 100.1% new, will be on 2. October, two days before Nuit Blanche. All members in any shape, class, form, hue, any standing, of any type or creed, will be offered a chair. If you feel like sitting at a table on the terrace, pretending to not be at the meeting, you are more than welcome to find your own Waiter of the Week.

The faint rumor that repetition here will end someday is hardly credible. One true fact and three–fourths of a fake rumor about the club are on a page called the About the Club Webpage. Readers who have personally read it, and one or two have, may already be club members for life without personal risk or exorbitant fees. Refunds cannot be refunded on principle. I spent the unrefundable funds on orange juice for the club's thirsty secretary.

The Ex–Question of Schleswig–Holstein

photo, sign, 1867, sculpture luxembourg fence

Many keen readers might have been thinking that it is appropriate to recall that it was today in 480 BC that a Greek named Themistocles showed up in time for the Battle of Salamis, to beat Xerxes I. Didn't we have this already? Poor Themistocles! Ten years later he was ostracised, and eventually moved to Persia, where King Artaxerxes I made him governor of Magnesia, no relation. A short time later, in 1650, a City of London gent named Henry Robinson opened his dating service, a historical first, even if I couldn't find any record of it. Then, on this day in 1911 the Ottoman Empire found itself at war with Italy. A year later Italy owned the Tripolitania, Fezzanand Cyrenaic sandpiles. While on the subject, there were several noteworthy birthdays today. Pompey comes to mind, because Plutarch thought he looked like Alexander the Great. Other historians thought the life of Pompey was simply too good to be true, and it was. Some years later, in 1547, author Miguel de Cervantes was born. Nicknamed Principe de los Ingenios he was waylaid by Algerian pirates and learned to row the hard way. Another sea going dude was Horatio Nelson, born in 1758. He appeared in the recently discovered novel by Alexandre Dumas, entitled The Knight of Sainte–Hermine. Horatio Hornblower was no relation. Finally, because this is France, we come to the demise of Emile Zola today in 1902. His death was caused by misadventure. He once said, "If you ask me what I came to do in this world, I, an artist, I will answer you – I am here to live out loud." There are 93 days remaining this year. That's our little world, folks!

A bientôt à Paris
signature, regards, ric

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