PARIS—Following an outpouring of financial support from the nation’s wealthiest residents, French president Emmanuel Macron admitted Monday he was not sure how to tell the billionaire donors that repairs to the damaged Notre Dame cathedral would only cost the equivalent of about $200. “The generosity has been truly overwhelming, but we’re really just talking about replacing some wood here,” said Macron, who explained how damage to the iconic Paris landmark looked worse than it really was, and that even though the contractor’s quote came in at 500 euros, he had been able to save money by doing some of the work himself. “Things started looking a lot better after we vacuumed, and it turns out a lot of this soot will just buff right out. I guess we could use the rest of the billion or so euros to put in an underground parking garage or a nice upscale lounge with some sofas. But even then we’d have a couple hundred million left over.” At press time, Macron announced the repairs would be even cheaper than he had estimated after discovering an extra spire stored in the basement.
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