Thursday, August 9, 2007

sightseeing

Today was a little bit more of the kind of day that I worried about when I worried about this trip. In the morning, I thought about Sarah, who used to be my best friend, and toyed with the idea that we might run into her in front of the glass pyramid at the Louvre or crossing the Place de la Concorde. I wondered if her little girl's eyes were the same pale blue as Sarah's and if she would look at me through her lashes with her head tipped back, the way Sarah used to do. I remembered how I would call Sarah when I was sad and how she always knew exactly the right thing to say. But I told myself that there's no reason to think that Sarah's in Paris and every reason to think that she's not, and made myself read a book about the Thirty Years War that I found on the bookshelf in the hall.

In the afternoon, we wandered in widening circles through most of the 7th arrondissement. When, finally, we ended up at the river, we walked along the left bank and crossed at the the Pont Neuf, whose name means "new bridge," though, in fact, it's the oldest bridge in Paris. We passed the huge ferris wheel and noticed a statue at the edge of the Jardin de Tuileries of a lion mauling a crocodile. We sat for a while at a cafe just across from Notre Dame and had dinner at a pretty little Italian restaurant that we remembered from a couple of years ago when it used to be a pretty little Italian restaurant with a different name. I didn't want to take the Metro home, but L talked me into it, and, somehow, we timed everything perfectly and caught both trains without even having to wait.

12 comments:

slouching mom said...

Thank you for the narrative. I was able to step outside myself and imagine being in each of those spots, most of which I know. Will you visit Pere-Lachaise? My brother used to live in an apartment right across from it. How about Ile Saint Louis? There's a fantastic ice cream place there. Maison-Berthillon. It's on a corner of the rue St. Louise en l'Ile.

I'm thinking a book on the Thirty Years War might cure a lot of things, sadness among them.

slouching mom said...

Oops. That's the rue St. Louis en l'Ile.

My Reality said...

Great photo. Your pictures are amazing. I am looking forward to seeing more of your trip.

missedconceptions said...

Niobe, Why does this type of day bother you? It sounds like you have plenty to do -- perhaps you have too much sightseeing to do and not enough to actually think about?

Caro said...

Lovely description.

niobe said...

missedconceptions: The second part of the day was pretty much the antidote to the first part. Having my thoughts circle around Sarah is very painful. I make a real effort most of the time not to think about her, because, when I do, I miss her terribly. And, it's not only her. It's the fact that I trusted her so completely, that it never even occurred to me that there was any reason that I shouldn't trust her.

Aurelia said...

I may never get to go to Paris, but if you keep describing it so well, I may just start to think I have!

I'm sorry you are sad about your friend.

Catherine said...

I love hearing about your travels and seeing your photographs. You have quite an eye for details I would probably miss on my own. Yet you never tell the whole story, do you? It's intriguing and maddening all at the same time. :o)

Lori said...

I have been on the huge ferris wheel, and the neighborhood around Notre Dame is one of my favorites. Thank you for bringing that all back to me.

Lost relationships, of all sorts, are painful to look back on. Especially when, at one time, it sounds like she was a good friend... or so you thought.

thirtysomething said...

What a wonderful bit of eye-candy, the pictures. Love it.
As for the lost friendship, that is heavy on the heart, is there any chance that you will ever be able to rebuild the bridge of trust that obviously collapsed?

Eva said...

Sounds like quite the classical Parisian day to me...wistfulness and old architecture.

niobe said...

thirtysomething: I wish it were something that could be fixed. Sadly, it's just not.