Ming the Mechanic:
Reception with the mayor

The NewsLog of Flemming Funch
 Reception with the mayor2004-06-07 16:47
picture by Flemming Funch

The new major of Toulouse had invited us for a reception at the Capitole today. Well, not just us, but all the local Danish and Swedish people they could get hold of. On occasion of the recent Danish and Swedish national holidays. Champagne and Petit Fours and official speeches. There aren't all that many Scandinavian people here, but it was still a lot more than we had met before. Very nice of the mayor. And, well, something that is different in Europe than in the U.S. The mayor of Los Angeles wouldn't have thought of inviting us for champagne at the townhall. Or if we had gotten such an invitation, I would have suspected it was a sting operation for the IRS or something. Not that the mayor in L.A. wasn't a nice guy too, and it was a good place to live. But there's a difference in how public authorities deal with the people. Also seen from here. If I call the U.S. embassy with a question, 14 euros is charged to my phone bill. I can go and see the local consulate, but when I tried, it took me a couple of weeks before they returned my phone call with an appointment. And you go through the obligatory metal detectors and armed guards. Not that the consul wasn't nice. But the Danish consulate was a place I could just drop by, and where the consul went out of his way to help me out with I needed, even though he only spoke French. And he sends me a note once in a while when he thinks there's something Danish people ought to know. He gave a nice speech today too. Oh, damn, I accidentally overwrote my camera phone's memory with a backup, so I lost my pictures from today. Hm, I'll have to borrow one of Thomas' pictures, as they were there too, and he didn't mess up his P900 today. The reception was in the Salle des Illustres, which is quite a magnificent place.

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8 Jun 2004 @ 12:59 by Seb @ : that was a cool initiative
Does the mayor do this for people of every nationality?  

8 Jun 2004 @ 14:33 by Jon Husband @ : France and the French
Avec l'exception general de Paris, n'est-ce que les Francais sont chalereux, acceuillant et tout a fait geniales ?  

8 Jun 2004 @ 17:05 by ming : Les Francais
J'ai trouvé les francais tres chaleureux et tres accueillant. Personne nous n'as traité mal. Je ne sais pas si meme les Parisiens sont tres mal. Tout le monde ici dit que les Parisiens sont une chose differente. Peut-être.  

8 Jun 2004 @ 17:08 by ming : The Mayor
He said they did it for Norway recently too, which isn't even a member of the EU. So I'd guess they do it for a lot of different nationalities.  

11 Jun 2004 @ 13:26 by Thomas @ : Is Norway a part of the EU?
According to the local ex-pat gossip the major actually screwed up during the reception for the Norwegians by saying that Norway is a part of the EU. What the heck, a country drowning in oil and gold needs some talking down to ;)  

11 Jun 2004 @ 15:00 by ming : EU
Easy to make the mistake, I guess, as they have most of the free trade, free travel types of agreements with Norway and Switzerland as between the EU countries.

Btw, we just got the very same kind of invitation, but this time for the U.S. Independence Day. Hey, I guess we can just go to all of those things, and we'll get champagne and foie gras once per week.  

12 Jun 2004 @ 12:31 by Seb @ : citoyen du monde
... bien sûr, il est de bon ton d'agir comme un authentique citoyen du monde ! Et tu apprendras à bien connaître le maire!  

12 Jun 2004 @ 12:32 by Seb @ : Les Parisiens
Jon: Les parisiens voient beaucoup plus de touristes, et à cause de cela ils semblent avoir moins de patience...  

12 Jun 2004 @ 13:54 by ming : Le Maire
Oui, une bonne idée. Je suis un citoyen du monde. Alors, je me sens comme chez moi avec toutes les nationalités. Et le maire semble avoir beaucoup de champagne.  

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