Paris Diaries: Yodeling Into the Abyss
The day before the trip I couldn't keep food down. I kept breaking off into crying fits. I didn't really want to go, did I? No, that's why I waited until ten days before the trip to book a hotel. I was hoping something would happen. A strike. A horrible storm. A technical glitch. Air France is really sorry, but we forgot to actually process your payment. The dog ate your ticket. You can't fly to Paris. So sorry.

But no catastrophes occurred. I was going to Paris. Whether I wanted to or not.

Never Ask a Jew for Pep Talk

Ariel, in the most misguided attempt ever, tried to assuage my guilt by telling me an epic Parisian horror travel story. When he got to the end, after detailing his insane attempt to get onto a packed train with a large suitcase on christmas eve and finally aborting the trip and opting to stay in a hotel room before scrapping his trip altogether, I looked at him and said, "How exactly is that supposed to make me feel better?"

"Well, because it happened to ME."

I'm still not sure how it was intended to make me feel better, but I wasn't going to think about it.

The Doberman was far more effective in his technique promising me that if we went to Paris together he would dress up as a Hunchback and dance around in front of Notre-Dame. Which, in a way, also made me glad I was going to Paris alone. Because I didn't really feel like bailing him out of a French jail every other day.

But still, I call him, the one I promised, the one who blames me for all my wrongs and his. Terrified. Hoping he will pick up with phone. And then, hoping for what?

If I was only a bit as heartless as he thought, and he was a bit as brave as I had hoped then he might have picked up the phone and we might have been able to have a conversation. But no, we stick to the old pattern. Whether I reject him or he rejects me, he gives me the silent treatment. And me?

I wait and I hope and I wonder and I forgive. And all the while he thinks I'm playing a game.

But I'm not the one who is playing.

That is if he thinks of me at all. Which he doesn't. Or he wouldn't have ignored that weeping phone call. He wouldn't have let me yodel into the void hoping for an echo and hearing nothing.


And for the first time I realize that I really am going to Paris alone. And that's what I'm so terrified of. Being completely and utterly alone.

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Oh Paris, Not Again: The Return of the Paris Journals

Never Book Plane Tickets When You're Drunk

"Paris is always a good idea." Sabrina

There were really three main reasons why I went back to Paris . The first was a promise I made that when and if NYU finally came through and gave me the money owed to me that the first thing I would do is buy tickets to Paris. A promise made to a sad love. A promise made to a man who treats me now like the shadow of a ghost. An uncomfortable echo of some terrifying phenomena best ignored. "You were happy in Paris," he said when he made me promise. "You would have been too," I almost said.

But I didn't.

The history of our relationship could be summed up in one word: almost.

He always had such strange ideas about my happiness. When I was happy, when I wasn't. He has known me longer than anyone in NYC, but he has less of clue about when I am genuinely happy than the homeless guy who sleeps in the sun by the movie theater on 1st Avenue. Still he was right about that. I was happy in Paris.

So I got the check, but I was still not sure about Paris. I thought maybe Florence. Or Edinburgh. Or Martha's Vineyard. Or Maui.

But then, not but two days after I got my check, Air France had a sale starting pretty much when my final exams ended.

Still I hesitated.

The sale was ticking down. I had three days to decide, two, one, 12 hours, six hours, four hours.

And I probably still wouldn't have bought the tickets if it wasn't for that extra glass of wine I had after dinner. So I sat at my computer dizzily playing with departure times and dates. I discovered the cheapest flight would be for me to stay in Paris for ten days.

Ten days.

My first trip to Paris was ten days, and sure I didn't get everything done that I wanted to get done, but I knew that I hadn't gotten fairly lonely near the end of that trip calling Rabid just to be able to converse easily, to talk without stumbling, without five minutes of pondering verb tenses and vocabulary, to talk with precision. I thought, "10 days is too long," but of course my jewness got the best of me and I decided "Fuck it, 10 days it is. There is enough for me to do in 10 days easily." And then I went to sleep.

It wasn't until the next day when the haze of wine had worn off that I realized I would now have to book extra days in a hotel room and whatever money I saved on the flight, I had already doubled on room and food. I suddenly felt uneasy about my trip, I mean, why was I going? Because of a promise made to some jackass who wouldn't even speak to me? Who ruined my birthday day and made the entire holiday season miserable? A person who sent me information on ....Scientology? He certainly didn't care if I went or not. And I didn't really want to go. I mean, there are so many other places I want to go and haven't been. Shouldn't I be spending my money on going to those places rather than heed the promise made to the very person who I was leaving the US in order to forget?

Which brings us to factor number three....

"Who knew all of our ex-boyfriends could fit on one little island." Sex and the City Finale

I had to go to Paris because I've dated everyone in NYC. Two days before I left for Paris, I went out to dinner with a friend. In the five block walk to the restaurant I walked by two people I dated and one other was sitting in the restaurant.

It was time to spread the heartbreak around. Leave a few broken men on a foreign shore.

You know, where I'm less likely to run into them when I have no make up on the way to the deli.


The Strangest Thing
I know I promised posts. I spent all that time in Paris taking notes. Scribing in my notebook although my notes the first and second time were far more formed. These notes are fractured. I found myself having difficulty on the plane even figuring out how to organize them. Chronologically made some sense, but entirely. There were events that out of sequence, but seemed that they should be written of together for thematic reasons. I am still unsure. It is not often as a writer that I experience this kind of unsureness once I have begun a project. Who can say the cause?

And there is the tiredness since I returned. A lethargy. A desire to sleep. I am still on Paris time perhaps. Or my heart remains there, wanting to sleep.

He IMs me or emails me almost every day. I struggle through with babelfish and what little French I remember. Too bad my high school French teachers never taught us anything that should be included in a love letter. Taught us the words for marine mammals instead of how to say I miss you. I still remember the words for monkey and umbrella, but I don't know how to say I wish you were to take me to bed. And this was supposed to be the allure of the relationship. That I wasn't fluent. That I didn't have the words to express myself nor could I understand him more than 20% of the time. That old gypsy curse. May you get what you want. For a while, of course.

I have so much to do. So many posts to write before the semester begins and yet I find myself not wanting to write about Paris in a way. But I will. Because more than anything I am a writer. Not because I have a choice, but because at the bottom of everything it's who I am. I wouldn't know who I was without it.

But you'll have to be a bit patient. Wait until I finally wake up and return to American life.

Jumping the Gun

Well I know you all want to hear about adventures, but I'm going to spoil the dramatic arc because today my new parisian paramour asked me to join him at his family home in Brittany with him in August. And I had to tell you because I'm just gushing with the insanity of it all. Don't worry, there is still ALOT to tell, but it's just so nice to finally have a guy crazy over me and not just crazy.

I swear to you I will start the posts soon, but at the moment I'm still recovering from jetlag and running around performing all of my errands (buying food, doing laundry, unpacking) that one must do when one returns. But I'm a very different little bunni. Not, at the moment, the littlest ball of hate in the world. And perhaps with more hope than I ever thought.

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What a long strange trips it's been

Landed. My ankles are now swollen up like two grapefruits, and I am going to saunter to bed not because I'm so tired, but because my feet need the rest.

Assuredly, and Bakerina can back me up on this, Paris pulled a complete reversal on me and my last two days there were spectacular in a completely unexpected way. Oh man, I'm a completely different girl-chattery and happy and smiling.

Ma nouvelle belle ami a paris has already written me an email which means that next time I go to Paris, I don't have to pay for a hotel room. I'm already at Air France checking the rates. Who is with me?

I mean someone has to hold to video camera steady.

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