Monday, March 7, 2011

You cannot have a Monkey on a Leash

Pet Cemetery Paris

I thought initially that I had arrived in Paris during the International Beggars Convention as there is - and I am not kidding - at least one Beggar every 30 Meters.  

Rather than in Vienna, where the Beggar Franchise has been granted to the Romanians - in Paris it is free range beggaring. They are of all shapes, sizes, colors and ages.

There are old men and women and there are also very young men and women.

Outside Galeries Lafayette there is man with a sign saying that he is 79 years old. 20 Meters away is another man with a sign saying that he is 78 years old. 

There are some people without signs who may well be 100 years old but who could also be dead because they show no signs of life whatsoever and are in the same spot every day.

There are lots of begging people with Cats and Dogs. These got most of my money. There are people playing music machines and some have animals. I did not see any Monkeys. These may not be allowed. You are permitted to starve to death in Paris but you probably cannot have a Monkey on a leash. 

Groups of men roams the streets with battery powered music machines and blow trumpets. After two deafening notes they ask people for money and seem surprised when they don’t get any. They infest the subway and it is impossible to take the Metro without being aurally assaulted.

There are many homeless people living in the streets. There is one man living in the lane just near Melissa’s apartment. He sits on a big pile of his belongings staring into space or playing Angry Birds. 

Families of homeless people roam the streets with their bags. They have nowhere to go until nightfall when they can find a churchyard or an empty doorway. 

I think this this is part of Sarkozy’s new society. It seems to be a bit messier that the old society. There are now many more people to step over. 

We went to the Pet Cemetery and saw where Rin Tin Tin is buried. This seems to be a surprising place for Rin Tin Tin to be buried as he is a famous American dog - but then Jim Morrison is also buried in Paris. I don't think Rin Tin Tin died in a Paris bathtub. 

The cemetery is actually called the Dog Cemetery - which I think is unnecessarily exclusive - but there are more cats that dogs – and indeed more live cats that live dogs. There is a Lion buried there somewhere but we did not look for the grave. There is one Rabbit – Bunga. 

People suffer from great poverty of imagination when naming their pets. Every second dog is named Ulysse. The cats almost all have names such as Chou Chou, Pou Pou or Frou Frou.

If I was a cat and was named Pou Pou - this is what I would do in my minder's slippers each morning. 

Our cats are happy and well balanced because they have proper names such as Monika Rupert Jerilderie and Sissi Leopoldina Katoomba.

Well alright Muffin is an exception - but I was inexperienced at naming when I got her 19 years ago and anyway she is has Alzheimer’s and does not care what her name is – or about much at all really.

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