December 16, 2006
Rain, Trains and Streets
While there were a few things that fell in habitual line with a "regular day," the majority of my twenty four hours was a little outa whack. What is a regular day after all? Frankly, I'm not sure I have really had one of those in awhile.
1. I nearly got stabbed by a French umbrella.
2. I nearly got run over by a horse in the rain (see above).
3. I was kicked out of a taxi along Grand Boulevard in the rain (see above).
4. It rained all day. ALL day. (see above).
5. I walked 20 miles in the rain sans un umbrella (see above).
6. My friend Denis is generous and insane. He left me a box of Sebahat Prestige Lokoum candy, Foie Gras De Canard Entier Du Sud-Ouest with half a bottle of a traditional accompaniment of Tokaji Aszu from Hungary. Evil on the body but soooooooooo good. Yeah, I'm sampling them all and I just had dinner, l'esgargots et le canard for the fourth night in a row. A great bordeaux and 80% dark chocolate from Les Printemps preceded dinner. It doesn't stop there.
7. I bought something ridiculous to make up for the foreign tax rule (applies to most places in Europe). Maybe I'll wear it sometime if only for the sanity of the purchase in the first place.
8. Cell phones seem to work in underground trains here. I haven't a clue why or how and given how difficult other things have been, I probably won't opt to ask questions about this one.
9. I forgot how many people kiss in public here. They hold hands,reach for each others (hands, arms, shoulders) and generally just kiss a lot. I saw an 18'ish year old girl blow a large bubble from her wad into her boyfriend's ear today.
He did not budge, but I noticed a small smile approach as she blew another one and then another. Then a gentle kiss. He more than noticed, for when he turned to acknowledge her wonderful feminine frolicking and flirting, he played with her hat, noticed the color, paid her a compliment and then gave her the same kind of kiss back. She more than noticed too. It was a great thing to see.
Odd thing that when you used to live somewhere and return as a semi-tourist, okay, a tourist, part of you is SO familiar with it all, and part of you does everything you can to soak it up because of the familiarity. Meaning: I need it, I crave it, I want it, I must........so the intensity exceeds normal levels by a lot. At least for me
I had dinner with a British journalist tonight in the Marais who talked about her dinner holiday party the previous night with her American CNN friend. We no doubt have mutual friends. Ever have one of those foreign conversations where you know the culture and lifestyle is so far fetched from your own but the way you think about the world could easily be a DNA double.
I seem to have those experiences a lot lately: not unlike ten years ago this time and before that ten years ago again, almost precisely at the same time. More than interesting. Once you start noticing former patterns in your life, it is amazing how many more you'll notice.
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