Roms waiting for the next ATM victim
Life in Paris & France,  Money,  Police

For the Paris Police Dial 17

Roms waiting for the next ATM victimWhen an emergency arises in Paris or you want to report a problem to the police, dial “17”. Today a security guard at the Banque de France helped me after an incident at the BNP Paribas Beaumarchais, Bastille. After speaking with the police on the guard’s phone, I noticed the number on his screen “17”. I will never forget that number and used it about an hour later. By coincidence the same three teenagers who hassled me earlier at the ATM inside the BNP Paribas were leaving the line one metro train the same time as I walked off. I dialed “17”.

As I followed them, I spoke with the police about what happened earlier to me and responded to questions as I followed them at a distance. My original plan had been to return to the scene of an almost crime, go across the boulevard and take a few photos for a web entry to share some traveler tips with my readers.

As I was taking photos and had just shot a video of the same teenagers hassling a man (on his smartphone) at the ATM outside, the police arrived. Out from the traiteur Dalloyau came an employee explaining to the police that he sees these incidents all the time.

The police acknowledged they are aware of it, the surveillance camera is pointed right at the corner. If nothing serious happens like bodily injury or robbery, there is not much the police can do. The hasslers are minors.

My last “Roms” experience occurred in 2014 “He Stole My Wallet But Got – Caught — the Update

Emergency numbers to call
AngloInfo has a full listing of emergency numbers as well as the how to’s: What the caller tells the emergency operator, the Pan-European emergency number 112, pharmacies/chemists, wasp and hornet nests, emergency words and terminology in English and French, understanding the French emergency services, medical emergencies and accidents (SAMU, SMUR – resuscitation, and H-MICU severe illness), sapeurs-pompiers (firefighters and first rescue), the Wednesday emergency siren, understanding the French Police Services, etc.

Beware of pick pockets, three teenagers crowding around you at the ATM or standing too close in the metro. The theatrical phrase “They’re back” holds true for this year in the Bastille area.

Reading a France 24 article from 2012 (Charlotte Boitiaux wrote an article about the Romanians and Bulgarians (Roms) “Ici, au moins les poubelles sont pleines”). There are always families scattered around the shady boulevard Richard Lenoir. The latest group though, is not as tidy as the others when it comes to rummaging through the garbage containers (poubelle).

This Web site and and its blog articles are for travelers to Paris who are looking for advice from someone who lives in Paris. These tips are "for Parisians at heart". Many people would like to visit, some can and some cannot - so I will help you enjoy a glimpse of the city and its surroundings. This project has been ongoing since 2002. Prior to living in Paris (since 1992) my European history began in the early 70s with three years in Wiesbaden, Germany. My next foray onto the Continent was in the mid-80s after graduation from the University of Florida (where I met Erik): traveling around Europe and UK with my friend, Margie, hitchhiking around and working in Ireland. After living and working as a journalist in Sweden for four years, traveling on boats, the Trans-Siberian Railway, local trains and planes took Erik and I around the world. I began working as a flight attendant in 1990 for American Airlines, based in Chicago. We moved to Paris, France in 1992 where I commuted between Paris and Chicago for my flight attendant/stewardess job. Finally my inner voice said "Stop!" and I left American Airlines six weeks shy of 20 years January 1, 2010. Now that is over and I am back working as a journalist and photographer full time on - My videos are posted on YouTube on the colleensparis youtube channel. and I am active in Toastmasters 75. Enjoy!