“A Baguette, A Bottle Of Wine, And A Beach Blanket”

PARLER PARIS: A BAGUETTE, A BOTTLE OF WINE, AND A BEACH BLANKET


July 22, 2002


*** THREE MILES OF SANDY BEACH ALONG THE SEINE


With a baguette, a bottle of wine, a camera, a copy of Vanity Fair,
plus a blanket in tow and bathing suits under our jeans, we headed
for the beach…The Paris Beach. It was a first.


Everyone on the streets seemed to be walking in the same direction,
all in anticipation of spending an afternoon on the sand next to
their favorite waterway…the River Seine.


It’s been Paris’ biggest news event, on the cover of every local
magazine this week, so it’s no wonder that the entire city turned up
to see if the Mairie (city hall) could really pull it off. And they
did.


For three kilometers along the right bank, a sort of boardwalk has
been installed between the quai du Louvre and quai Henry-IV. Palm
trees have been placed in rows (planted in boxes), lined up like
those along the streets of Beverly Hills. Sand was spread on top of
the cobblestone quais, blue umbrellas planted for shade and blue and
white lounge and sling-back chairs are set out for the taking by
anyone who wants them.


Plastic tables and chairs have been installed for diners, several
petanque playing fields are along the eastern part and there is a
dance stage poised at the water’s edge next to the "Batobus" launch
site.


There was a spot (seemed to have our name on it) on the sand, under a
tree. It didn’t take long to spread the blanket, get comfortable and
make our sandwiches. Every spot on the sandy stretch was taken with
sun-worshippers, picnickers and families with kids.


From our vantage point, we had a view of the sparkling water on the
Seine and the newly cleaned golden-stoned government buildings on the
Ile de la Cité, an odd view to have from a "beach." No sea gulls, no
crashing waves, no surfers, no sailboats.


The "boardwalk" was awash with strollers, bikers, skaters and
photographers, somewhat reminiscent of the boardwalk at Venice Beach,
California, although not as outlandish. Parisians are still pretty
conservative dressers, even in warm weather on a lazy afternoon.


The media was out in droves…with mikes and cameras and pads of
paper. As it turns out, we were interviewed four times–once by
reporters from Japanese TV, to whom we spoke in French with our
American accents for a Japanese audience. What a chuckle!


And I came home with a tan. Another Paris first.


A la prochaine fois,


Adrian


P.S. The Batobus is an original 8-stop river boat service which you
can use to reach Paris’ most famous areas. The boats stop close to
the: Eiffel Tower, Orsay Museum, Notre Dame, Beaubourg, The Louvre
and many more places and monuments. More than a simple mean of
transport, Batobus is an interesting way to discover Paris and the
Seine River providing a fantastic view along the banks. Each of the
four trimarans making up the fleet seats 200 and has a glass roof and
a rear open deck. There is a boat every 15-25 minutes at each wharf.


So if you want to avoid the subway and enjoy a pleasant cruise, catch
a Batobus! (website: http://www.batobus.com/)


* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *


Parler Paris
/parlerparis/
Written and Edited by Adrian Leeds


Published by International Living
http://www.internationalliving.com
mailto:france@internationalliving.com


Issue Number 48, July 22, 2002


In this issue:


*** Take the Tour to Languedoc-Roussillon
*** Making the Big Move to France a Reality
*** Will Lance Win the Tour de France Sunday?
*** Cycling in Paris
*** Get Clued in on the French with Polly Platt
*** "Why This is the Best Asian Restaurant in Belleville"


* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *


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*** DISCOVER LANGUEDOC-ROUSILLON


Come with us to Languedoc-Roussillon–to the leisurely small towns
and villages in the French midi region noted for its traditions, its
conservation, and its centuries-old relaxed attitude to life.
Experience the
pace of life in rural France.


The Languedoc-Roussillon Discover
y Tour by International Living
October 22 – 27, 2002


Travel from Paris by TGV (Train de Grande Vitesse) to Montpellier.
Visit picturesque villages–St Jean de Vedas, Gignac, Montagnac and
stay at the Hotel l’Hostelleris Saint-Alban in the pretty village of
Nezignan L’Evêque. Have cocktails with resident journalist, Val
MacQueen, meet with real estate professional, Rob Thorne. Tour the
ancient quarter of Pezenas and the priory of Cassan, stroll around
the villages of Nezignan le Cebe, Caux and Aumes. Visit the chic
pretty little harbor adjoining Marseillan Plage and nearby Meze, dine
on oysters and hear tales of the wicked Simon de Montfort. Travel to
Roquebrun, take a property tour in Pezenas, visit Saint-Guillaume le
Desert. You won’t miss market day in Pezenas, one of France’s most
ancient markets, and you’ll visit Agde where you will learn more
about the Greek port and the building of the Canal du Midi.


ALL ALONG THE WAY, YOU WILL HAVE THE OPPORTUNITY TO LOOK AT
PROPERTIES AVAILABLE FRO PURCHASE IN THE REGION.


For a detailed look at the schedule, visit:
/parlerparis/liveinfrance/languedoctour.html


*** ARE YOU THINKING OF LIVING IN FRANCE?


If you’ve ever dreamed of moving to France or starting a new life in
Paris, you will not want to miss this important opportunity.


International Living’s
WORKING AND LIVING IN FRANCE CONFERENCE


Paris, France
October 18 to 21, 2002
/parlerparis/liveinfrance/index.html


These four full days in Paris will arm you with all the information
you need to make living and working here really happen!


The line-up for the conference includes seminars, tours, discussions,
dinners, cocktails–with well-known Paris-based experts in the fields
of:


Obtaining the Right to Be in France
Making the Move
Dealing with Technology
Finding Employment
Starting a Business
Finding Housing and Owning Property
Setting Up Your Finances
Health Care and Insurance
Learning the Language
Educating the Kids
Bridging the Cultural Differences
Finding Properties for Sale and Rent in Paris


Presenters include:


* Bill Bonner, CEO and Founding Officer of Agora, Inc. and
International Living


* Rose Marie Burke, Freelance Journalist


* Adrian Leeds, Director of the International Living Paris Office


* Stephen Pierce, Director of the American Chamber of Commerce in
France


* Jean Taquet, Legal Advisor


* Thirza Vallois, author of Around and About Paris Volumes I, II and
III and of Romantic Paris


Plus Many More!! See the full line-up at:
/parlerparis/liveinfrance/presentersbios.html


* Stay at luxury hotels at Place de la République, or in your own
Paris apartment:
/parlerparis/liveinfrance/accommodations.html


* Have cocktails and dinner at Chez Jenny "An authentic Brasserie
with a soul, a style and a history." See the complete information at:
/parlerparis/liveinfrance/dinner.html


* PLUS, take an amazing four-hour tour around Paris, winding in and
out of the prettiest of streets to illustrate residential areas that
have the most appeal. All 20 arrondissements will be covered, and
while author of "Around and About Paris", historian and Paris expert,
Thirza Vallois, describes the history and personalities of each.


Read Thirza Vallois’ article about the 20 arrondissements of Paris
here: /parlerparis/liveinfrance/arrondissements.html


* Reserve by August 15th, save $100 AND GET A FREE GUIDE!


When you reserve by August 15th, you will save $100, plus, you will
receive a FREE electronic copy of THE INSIDER PARIS GUIDE TO WORKING
AND LIVING IN FRANCE: THE INS AND OUTS by Rose Marie Burke!


SPECIAL NOTE: International Living Lifetime Members and Paris Key
Club Members are entitled to the early reservation price of $695 at
any time and the FREE "Insider Guide to Working and Living in
France."


To register or for more information, contact:


In the U.S. or Canada, Barbara Perriello, Agora Travel; tel.
1-800-926-6575 or 1-561-243-6276; email:
mailto:tours@internationalliving.com?subject=WorkingLivingConference


In France, Schuyler Hoffman, Assistant Director International Living
Paris Office; tel. +33 (0) 1 40 27 97 59; E-mail:
mailto:france@internationalliving.com?subject=WorkingLivingConference


*** QUOTE OF THE WEEK


"Ah, Bleu D’Auvergne [cheese]
with worms…my father would just love
that!"


— Philippe T. upon sight of the cheese tray at a Summer evening
dinner in a Paris courtyard.


*** THE TOUR DE FRANCE PEDDLES IN ON SUNDAY AT 4:30 P.M.


Avenue de Champs-Elysées, "the most beautiful in the world," 71
meters wide, has hosted the finish of the Tour de France since 1975
and provides the public along with the millions of television viewers
with over an hour long athletic spectacle. After three weeks of a
trying and intense race, he who wants to "be the most beautiful" must
hold out against the chase from the teams of sprinters, for whom
winning in Paris is always an intense happiness.


This week’s route:


Monday, July 22: Rest Day in Vaucluse
Tuesday, July 23: Vaison-la-Romaine – Les-Deux-Alpes
Wednesday, July 24: Les-Deux-Alpes – La Plagne
Thursday, July 25: Aime – Cluses
Friday, July 26: Cluses – Bourg-en-Bresse
Saturday, July 27: Régnié-Durette – Mâcon Time Trial
Sunday, July 28: Melun: Paris-Champs-Elysées


All eyes are on American Lance Armstrong, who has 14 stage victories
in the Tour de France to go with his three consecutive overall
triumphs and who still manages to lead the Tour.


Sam Abt, reporter for the International Herald Tribune, wrote just
this morning in an article published by the New York Times that
"Despite a strong effort, Armstrong was unable today to conquer
Ventoux, which he describes as ‘the hardest climb we’ll do this year’
and ‘not my favorite mountain.’


"’I didn’t come here to win Mont Ventoux but to win the Tour,’ he
said. ‘I
put some time into my rivals, so I’m pretty happy about that.’"


For the complete article, see:
http://www.nytimes.com/2002/07/22/sports/othersports/22TOUR.html


For a complete listing of all the stops, the schedule, the route and
all you’d ever want to know about the Tour de France, visit:
http://www.letour.fr/2002/us/infos/parcours.html


If you want to meet the US team, visit:
http://www.letour.fr/2002/us/index.html


*** BIKING IN PARIS BEYOND THE CHAMPS-ELYSEES
By Rose Marie Burke,
http://www.insiderparisguides.com/parisbiking/index.html


The city of Paris has finally committed itself to building a rational
system of bicycle paths. This commitment is part of the government’s
plan to reduce automobile traffic, which totals 2.7 million vehicles
a day. This is quite a radical move. Before 1995, the city
inadvertently encouraged more cars into the city by building vast
underground parking lots. In December of 1995, when most bus, Métro
and RER conductors decided to strike all at once, that all changed.
Parisians managed to get to work somehow, many by walking or biking.
The mayor’s office counted 380,000 bicycles on the streets. By 1998,
the media were advocating a Paris without cars. A poll in March 1998
showed that 89% of Parisians approve of the "Plan Vélo." The
government knows that to be pro-bicycle is politically very popular.


The city laid its first 50 kilometers of bike paths in February of
1996, getting rid of 600 parking spaces in the process. The main
routes run east to west and north to south. By 2000, it city claimed
it had created over 163 kilometers of "pistes cyclables." The goal of
the new Socialist government, elected in 2001, is to expand that
network fivefold. These bike paths vary in quality, from being
expanded lanes shared by bus and bike to veritable bike lanes that
are separated from automobile traffic. Since the city laid the
routes, the number of cyclists using them has doubled. The latest
statistics show that in the year ending May 2000, bike lane ridership
rose an incredible 16%. Bike commuters now average 2% to 5% of total
commuters, compared to under 1% before 1995. It’s not yet Amsterdam,
but it’s a start.


Some avid bicyclists take their bikes out any time, any day. But for
cyclotourists, it’s much more pleasant when cars abandon the roads
and leave them to the two-wheelers. Thus, the best time of day is
outside of rush hour: generally between 8 to 10 a.m. and 5 to 8 p.m.
Note that the days are long in summer and short in winter. In the
summer, when the sun sets late, why not consider a romantic evening
ride on the Champs Elysées? The best days of the week are Saturday,
Sunday, holidays and school vacation periods, of which there are many
in France. However, while Paris itself is excellent for bicycling on
a Sunday, well-known bicycling routes, like the Canals of Paris, will
be filled with families out for a spin. The best months are June,
July and especially August, when Parisians leave "en masse" for
vacation.


My perfect day for a bike ride in Paris?–A Sunday morning in
August.


Editor’s Note: The Summer 2002 version of the Insider Guide to Biking
in Paris at http://www.insiderparisguides.com/parisbiking/index.html
is now available for immediate download.


* * * * * ADVERTISEMENT * * * * *


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Biking around Paris is a great way to explore Paris and the
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nt size="2" face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif">
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bike…bike-friendly transport…and more.


This exclusive guide is loaded with tips about biking for the tourist
or commuter in Paris, plus 10 original day trips to destinations like
Givery, Auvers and Chantilly.


To find out more about Biking in Paris, click here now:
http://www.insiderparisguides.com/parisbiking/index.html


* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *


*** LET’S FACE IT…FRANCE IS DIFFERENT


"French or Foe?" but Polly Platt, was the first book I read about the
cultural differences we, as Americans, will face upon arriving in
France. And let’s face it, France is different.


Polly’s insight into the French mind vs. the American mind helped me
acclimate to my new life here in more ways than I can count. In fact,
I am still learning to practice what she preaches.


While her books (including her latest "Savoir Flair") will put you on
the right track, if you manage employees in France, come here
periodically to negotiate with associate firms, organize
multi-cultural project teams or even just your own family moving here
for an extended stay, you may have serious questions that need fast
solutions:


Why don’t my subordinates arrive on time?


Why am I not given clear instructions?


Why does everything take so long?


Why are sales people so indifferent?


Polly Platt Associates Cross-cultural Training can give you the
skills you need to work and live in France and feel at home in your
new environment.


This coming month, join Polly and her team for 2 days of engaging,
interactive training. They will cover the essential aspects of work
and social differences and teach you the practical skills you need to
assimilate into a new culture.


Saturday & Sunday, August 24 & 25 – 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Centre de Conferences Edouard VII, Paris


For a brochure or to register, call or write:
Alice Gray Gregory
mailto:alicegrayg@aol.com?subject=ParlerParisRequest
01.45.22.83.72
http://www.pollyplatt.com


*** THE BEST RESTAURANT IN BELLEVILLE


Always a fan of Asian cuisine, I was lucky to discover the best of
all the Asian restaurants in Belleville. How do I know this is so?
First, pass any other restaurant in the neighborhood and you’ll see
that the tables aren’t nearly as filled. Second, on many occasions,
neighboring diners who live in the neighborhood claim it to be so!
And since I have been dining here almost eight years, always quite
happily myself, I’m sure it is true. One other, also quite good, but
strictly Thai cuisine and much more expensive, is Krung Thep, also
listed in the Leeds Good Value Guide to Paris Restaurants.


The following is an excerpt from the guide:


LAO SIAM
Chinese, Thai, Laotian, Vietnamese
49, rue de Belleville, Arrondissement 19
Phone 01.40.40.09.68, Fax 01.42.39.33.59
Métro Belleville
A La Carte from 3.10 euro to 20.60 euro, About 18 euro per Person


This has been my favorite Asian restaurant in Paris for many years!
When you walk up rue de Belleville toward the restaurant, you will
notice that the other restaurants are only partially full. Lao Siam,
however, is always packed to the brim with an ethnically diverse and
interesting array of diners, its enormous menu will appeal to
everyone and its authentic cuisine is as delicious as any we’ve had.
It’s best to take a crowd with you so you can try lots of different
dishes. Our favorites are not necessarily the most expensive and we
consistently find the bill to be less than 18 euro a person. Service
isn’t always quite up to snuff, but the quality is so good, you might
not care. Be sure to ask for smoking or non-smoking, as they’re very
strict about keeping the two rooms separated. Special note: the best
tables are the round one in the window and the big round one just in
front of the aquarium. "We weren’t sure what we were ordering, and we
weren’t sure what we ate, but it was very good; and we would
definitely go back again. A great experience." Bill and Susan
Barnett


Editor’s Note: The Leeds Good Value Guide to Paris Restaurants was
updated this week to include 235 good-value restaurants in Paris.
This version at
http://www.insiderparisguides.com/restaurants/index.html is now
available for immediate download.


* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *


TO JOIN THE PARIS KEY CLUB:


If you are not a member of the Paris Key Club, and would like to be,
click here for more information:
http://www.agora-inc.com/reports/PKC/WPKCC523/


* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *


TO READ MORE:

>
Go to /parlerparis/


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HAVE A SPECIAL MESSAGE? WANT TO EXCHANGE LINKS?


If you would like to have your message read by the subscribers of the
Parler Paris Nouvellettre®, please email me at
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If you have links about Paris or France and would like reciprocal
links, please email me at mailto:france@internationalliving.com


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