Saturday, December 27, 2008

Moving home

It's after midnight and that makes it my official last day in Paris. How can it be?

I knew the time would go fast and it has. I can't evaluate the whole thing, not now, I can't think about it. Later, I'll do that later.

What have I done on my next-to-last day? I got up, not as early as I'd intended. I did little. I watched some tv (on the computer), I looked at my suitcases. I called my landlord. I moved my suitcases around. My landlord came over and we had one last, long chat. He brought me some sweet bread. I tried to give him a bottle of wine but he said I should drink it. I said I'd try.

I moved my suitcases around some more. My American friend, Nadine, texted to see how the packing was going. I said it wasn't going and asked her to come over and keep me company. Graciously, she agreed, and came bearing bread and a mini-quiche.

She said, upon seeing my bags, "That's it? It won't take long. An hour." We talked for a good long time and we got started on the wine and food. She encouraged me to pack while we talked. In fact, I got the packing done in 50 minutes, talking all the while.

We went out around 8pm for dinner in the neighborhood. One last, good, French meal was in order. The service was slow but friendly. The food was decent. The prices were ridiculous.

I will be happy to be home, in my own place, in my native culture. It will be hard to go back to work to have a steady routine again and I will much.

Perhaps I should talk a little bit about my last ten days in London. I had a good time with Kent. We did some low-key sightseeing, we spent a lot of time together and it was good--mostly sweet, a little bittersweet. We will stay in touch and that is all I know for certain.

We spent a couple of days with Alicia and her family, which was great. They welcomed us with open arms and made us part of the family. We even got x-mas presents! We brought...little...but I did make latkes on x-mas eve and they came out splendidly (if I do say so myself). Oily, delicious mess that they were. I've cooked for Kent many times, and he for me, but the latkes met with by far the most enthusiasm of anything I've made for him. I was pleased. Alicia and Ian seemed to like them too. We ate an extraordinary number.

And, then, before I knew it, I was back on the train, heading for Paris. I got in late, I woke late, I stalled on the packing. At 7am, I get on a shuttle and head to the airport. By 10am, I'll be on the plane and at 5pm I land in Washington.

This won't be the last entry but it may be a few days before I get my bearings and can write again. See you on the other side.

Grateful for: my time away.

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