11 June 2013
in paris, my hair was wavier.
mysteriously fantastically wavier. and the strawberries smelled like candy and the metro seats were different colors, different shapes. at every stop, every single stop. and the cobblestones felt good and warm beneath my feet, the alleyways were deep and narrow (just as I imagined they might be) and begged to be wandered. and every so often, there were accordion players (which meant there was the sound of accordion music) and there was also something called an almond croissant which I think maybe changed my life.
perhaps most importantly, ava was there. ava was there with me in paris, and I have so many of you to thank for that. surely we will do nothing but talk about it for the rest of our days. we will talk about the first croques-monsieur we ate, about how we could see the eiffel tower from our apartment window. just barely, but we could see it. and we will certainly talk about the way it sparkled at night. we'll talk about irene and how much we adore her (actually, we will probably fight over who likes her more) and we'll talk about the time I tried to buy apricots (in french) at the little neighborhood farmers market and failed miserably. we'll talk about the sweet boulangerie on the corner where we picked up warm baguettes, about the most beautiful pink cloud of cotton candy on a stick, maybe ever, about pretty french macaroons and crepes that oozed nutella. in the same breath, we will talk about the sweet crepe maker who insisted we sit and enjoy. we'll talk about the ominous organ music that flooded notre dame as we made our way through and then how we wandered the latin quarter afterwards with lovely xanthe and discovered tiny music boxes and enormous meringues (which we ate on the metro on the way home). inevitably, we will talk about ava in the audience at tedx and how she got me through, about the crazy mob scene at the polaroid workshop table afterwards, about the magic that irene made.
we will talk about about how we climbed up onto the roof through the apartment ceiling's skylight at magic hour, how the light fell like honey on the buildings and the rooftops all around us. we'll talk about the afternoon we spent following dusty fleamarket corridors this way and that, sifting through lovely junky jumbles along the way, about the little vintage keychains that seemed to be everywhere and the pink paper parasol I fell in love with (and then promptly lost on the metro on the way home). we'll talk about the teeny tiny pink forks they gave us to eat our french fries with, about too many bottles of orangina and cheese that seemed to melt in our mouths. we'll talk about the french junk food we bought at the supermarket (for science), about the time we squeezed into the photobooth with irene, about how I chased after two accordion players with my polaroid SX-70 like a crazy woman. we'll talk about the time we saw the mona lisa through a sea of iphones and ipads and digital cameras, about the day it rained and rained, til we were soaked through but we stopped and left our tiny red locks on the pont des arts anyway.
we will talk about digging through bargain bins deep with clothing at sympa, how we got lost at least a hundred times on the extraordinary streets of montmartre, looking for the house of van gogh or toulouse lautrec or picasso's studio. how we ended up at the cafe where amelie worked, ordered the creme brulee then fought over who got to break the surface first (ava, natch). we'll talk about that night we spread gobs of nutella on toasted crustless white bread from the supermarket, turned out all the lights in the apartment, climbed up into the loft and watched amelie on my computer. like dorks. we'll talk about how we longed to lay on the forbidden green grasses of every park, how the language seemed to flow around us like liquid, like so much liquid. we'll talk about the time that lady got on the metro with her sad eyes and her sad microphone to sing sad songs and no one seemed to see her, no one seemed to hear. then we will talk about how we wanted to cry when she gently pushed her way off at the next stop. we will talk about the dreamy toy boats at luxembourg gardens and the little vintage shop with all the striped shirts and the old art nouveau metro signs and I am sure we will talk about my incessant need to repeat each metro stop after it was announced. barbes rochechouart. barbes rochechouart. how I insisted the announcements were like mini language lessons and who were we to refuse? surely we will talk about pretty doorways with scrolling black ironwork and pretty bicycles with honey-colored baskets. and cheap kitschy souvenirs and cute french boys. and we will most certainly talk about how I could not, would not shut up about my newly wavy hair.
and then, when we are done talking about all the things, all the lovely paris things, we will talk about how we are already plotting our return.