Business could be brisker for this lonely little kiosk under roiling clouds and thunderclaps at Paris Plages. The city’s month-long Seine-side “beach” opened yesterday. Fingers crossed for a bit of sunshine before it closes August 21.
Le Figaro today has a smiling composite of new IMF chief Christine Lagarde, Nicolas Sarkozy, European Commission President José Manuel Barroso, and Angela Merkel, under the triumphal headline “Europe Saves Greece and Reinforces the Euro” after the Brussels summit ran deep into yesterday evening to pull out an agreement. The financial daily Les Echos adds other smiling faces and declares, “Europe Concludes a Historic Accord to Save the Euro.” No smiling politicians for Libération’s cover, which asks “Crisis of the Euro: Who Will Pay?” Le Parisien has a piece on France falling for Twitter, although the French make up only one percent of the world’s tweeps. The Dominique Strauss-Kahn affair – where tweets from the courtroom were the press’s lifeline – is credited with hooking French hacks.
DSK who? France Soir’s cover has another Socialist, François Hollande, putting up big numbers on Nicolas Sarkozy ahead of the 2012 presidential election. “Hollande Crushes Sarkozy,” it declares, with 57 percent for Hollande to 43 percent for the incumbent in an Ifop-France Soir poll.
Almost all the dailies reserve part of their frontpage for a fist-pumping man in yellow, Thomas Voeckler, the unassuming French cyclist who kept the Tour de France leader’s jersey for a tenth day with his heroics on the Col du Galibier yesterday, only three days from Sunday’s finish on the Champs Elysées. No Frenchman has won the race since 1985.
((The kiosks don’t know it yet, but Voeckler finally just lost the yellow jersey to one of Luxembourg’s Schleck brothers, Andy, which was pretty much in the cards. Andy’s bro Frank is second. Voeckler drops to fourth. But a French guy, Pierre Rolland, won today’s stage.))