Remember when you said that “Paris is no longer Paris”? Well, I do. But now I’m wondering if you were right, and since I just got back from there I thought I’d tell you about my trip so you can judge for yourself.
Melania and I were invited by the French president to come to Paris for a big celebration in my honor. It was also Bastille Day, their national holiday, but I could tell that they really needed me to be there because otherwise nobody would have come to the festivities.
The flight over was, as always, brutal. Narrow seats, no legroom, awful food, endless waiting for baggage and security…Hah! Just kidding! In case you forgot, I’m President now, so I got to fly over on Air Force One.
I ate steak and ice cream, stretched out for a long nap, and then when we landed, just to throw my diplomatic immunity around, I waltzed right through the customs gate at Orly, cutting in front of all the people standing in line to get their passports checked. It was so much fun I went back and did it again. Let’s see Hillary Clinton try that!
So we arrived early Thursday and drove into town. I keep hearing about how terrible traffic is in Paris, especially coming in from the airport, but our motorcade didn’t have any problem at all — and it was a weekday morning during rush hour! Yet another example of fake news from the biased liberal media.
After lunch they took us to see the president, Emmanuel Macron, and his wife. When I met Brigitte I noticed right away that she’s a lot closer to my age and that Emmanuel is a lot closer to Melania’s age, and suddenly I thought I understood why he had insisted so much on us coming over.
I was thinking, “At last!” and tried to steer the conversation in that direction, but then the girls took off on their own for the afternoon while Emmanuel and I went to some kind of museum thing, so that wasn’t in the cards after all.
I’m still trying to figure out how Jack Kennedy managed it. If I had known how difficult it was I might have just stayed in real estate. Fewer chances to hit on interns, but at least you don’t have half the Secret Service breathing down your neck day and night.
Anyway, the ladies went to see Notre Dame — not the football team, the cathedral. I told Brigitte to say hello to Quasimodo for me while she was there. A very close friend of mine. Also a terrific bell-ringer. One of the best. Not a lot of people know that.
Meanwhile, Mannie took me to Invalides, which is this big military monument in the middle of town. I was hoping he’d take me to Versailles like he did with Putin, because it’d be easier for me there to make sure that my hair’s staying in place. But he wanted to show me Napoleon’s tomb.
Click this link to access a picture of it that I posted on the part of the Internet that I invented. (Unlike that heating-heart liberal Al Gore, I only take credit for things that I have personally originated.)
As you can see, it’s really not very fancy for someone of his wealth and status, but it did give me some ideas to suggest to Congress for my own memorial.
I like the round room, the marble and the classical-style statuary (nice touch), but notice anything? That’s right: no gold! Anywhere! Also, where are all his Time Magazine covers? The guy had no sense of decoration.
But Emmanuel’s choice was fitting. Napoleon and I have a lot in common: we both overcame nearly insurmountable disadvantages to become the leaders of the world’s most powerful nation of our time.
In Napoleon’s case, he had to overcome being short (and having small hands, probably, judging from the way he was always hiding them — sad). And in my case, I had to launch a career with only a few million dollars in seed money. History! People don’t think about it enough!
That evening we went to the Eiffel Tower. I can tell you this: you compare that building to Trump Tower and you can see that the French don’t know anything about construction. The Eiffel Tower is all skinny and spindly and tapers off to a point at the top, with lots of open parts. What a waste of rentable floorspace!
The thing looks like a big bungee jumping platform, but it turns out they have a restaurant right there inside it, and that’s where we had dinner. Not as good as the Trump Grill, of course, but it was okay.
They even brought in a special chef from the United States to make Melania and me feel at home. He didn’t look or sound very American, but Emmanuel said that he was “a star in Michigan” or that he had “three stars in Michigan” — something like that. It was hard to understand him, for one thing because he had a lot of trouble pronouncing “Michigan.”
But that was okay, because when the chef, this guy named Allen Ducasse, came out to meet me, I pronounced his name wrong, so things sort of evened out. Since I thought he was American I just called him “Mr. Ducasse” the way I would have said it in New York, and was about to make a joke about him not having a pompadour haircut. But everybody was already laughing, so I quit while I was ahead.
How was I supposed to know that in France “Ducasse” is pronounced “doo-kahss“? Mel could have told me earlier instead of correcting me in front of everybody. But hey, when you’re a star (I mean a star like me, not just in Michigan) you can get away with stuff like that. How’s that grab ya?
At dinner I couldn’t help but notice some of the little differences between the U.S. and France. Like, here in France they don’t put the ketchup bottle right on the table for you. You have to ask for it.
Also, when I asked the waiter how his acting career was going, he just looked at me blankly. Turns out, waiters here are only waiters! Who knew? It’s not like New York, that’s for sure.
Another thing that surprised me — not just at dinner but all during the day: I was very impressed with the spirit of free speech and activism that I saw in France. Everywhere I went I saw youngsters getting signatures on petitions and collecting donations for some kind of charity or political action or something.
Amazingly, virtually 100 percent of the people they approached gave them money. And not only that, but they were so eager to give, most of them let the petitioner’s friends take the contributions directly out of their pockets while they were signing so they wouldn’t have to lose time fishing around for their wallets afterwards. It saves time for the kids too, so they can collect more signatures.
And I could see they were really devoted to their cause, because after getting some money (or whatever — some people gave them phones or even their whole wallets!) they always ran — not walked — to go find their next donor. It was really something.
That kind of drive and efficiency and generosity is the bedrock of a great free society! Ask those kids if they’re in favor of big government interfering with their business and trying to take over the management of their donations and see what they say!
The next morning, July 14th, they had this big parade. It was huge. Bigger than the one they had for Barack Obama when he came to Paris for COP21, I can tell you that.
But you know, Jim, there’s one drawback to this being a “world leader” thing: you have to sit through a whole lot of boring stuff. Parades, ceremonies, speeches, meetings, briefings, FBI interviews…It never stops.
Geez, the G20 was bad enough, although Ivanka helped me out at that one roundtable so I could get in some putting practice in my hotel room. But in Paris on Friday morning I had to watch this whole three-hour parade without once wiping my nose or adjusting my briefs or anything because the cameras were on me the whole time. Seemed endless.
Afterwards, Man-O and I said our goodbyes and Mel and I headed for the airport to fly home. It felt good to be able to sleep in my own (and Lincoln’s!) bedroom that night.
I gotta say it, Jim: I had a nice time. It was a big trip, a beautiful trip, and nobody enjoys trips better than me, believe me. It kept the illegal alien collusion thing out of my mind for a while. And, I promise you: France paid for it!