Sunday, August 17, 2008


I'm coming to you from Paris. I'm using up some of the frequent flier miles and hotel points I've earned in the past couple of years.

As you walk around Paris, you may find small signs indicating the remains of someone buried in the wall. They usually have a date between August 19 and August 25, 1944, and the epitaf, "Mort pour la France". These are the guys that were killed in the uprising just before the liberation of Paris. DeGaulle wanted to send the Germans, and the world, a message and these patriots paid the price.

The current street scam in paris seems to be the "lost ring" game. Some street kid "finds" a gold ring, and, as there is no owner close by, offers to sell it to you. It's happened to me twice. Once on the Champs d'Elysee and again today on the Quai d'Orsay. Its a stale gag, sorta like the "I know where you got dem shoes" on Bourbon Street.

An observation of the police shows that they patrol in threes. Two guys will interview the subject while a third stands back 20 feet or so on overwatch. It's very unobtrusive but if you know what is happening, it looks very effective. They won't be caught by surprise. I noticed the Army doing the same thing at the Eiffel Tower. Patrol by fire team with full automatic weapons.

More later.

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