I’m home, and glad to be back in my own bed though I’m not sure I’m glad to be back in the States. There are things about France that I’m missing already. The transportation total for yesterday was six trains, one bus, and one plane – and a whole lot of coughing as I’m sick again. France was wonderful, Oday was wonderful, the food was wonderful, etc etc etc. I promise I’ll write more soon.


In about 24 hours my first matter of business will be du cafe et un paquet de Gauloises rouges, along with checking the following things off the lists:
3. spend a week in paris in the springtime.
8. take a vacation.
16. visit oday in france.


Public Service Announcement #5 (courtesy of Newman):
There is no such thing as a “skrimp.” The word is SHRIMP (or, for those from Down Under, PRAWN. Thank you.

The weather today reminds me of Paris the last time I was there. We went for Easter when I was in London – a long weekend – took the Eurostar, stayed at Three Ducks, did our own thing. Friday we saw the Pendulum at The Pantheon, went to the Musee D’Orsay, cooked for the first time in months, and got really drunk in the garden, among other things. Saturday it poured. The heavens just opened up and dumped on us. Newman and Steph-a-nee did their own thing – I think they went to the Louvre – but I braved the rain and went to le cimitiere Montparnasse and visited Baudelaire – then walked down the Boulevard Raspail and soaked it up – the city, the sights and smells, the store at the corner of Raspail and Montparnasse where I bought my blue journal. I walked from Montparnasse to the Ile de la Cite where water was standing in the streets – taking brief respite at the Sainte Chapelle – then walking to Notre Dame. My clothes were soaked. My sandals were soaked. The laminated map I was using as an umbrella was soaked – but I was having a brilliant time. I don’t think I would’ve been any happier had it been sunny. Today’s rain holds none of that magic – only the memory.

In case you’re concerned that the entire weekend was a wash, so to speak, you’re wrong. The rain continued through Sunday morning, then lifted just as Steph-a-Nee and I left the Centre Pompidou. We walked for a long time, then took the Metro to Montmatre and walked the steps to Sacre Coeur, where we were presented with a brilliant view of the entire city. I didn’t want to leave. But I did and three years passed and here I am.