Tuesday, September 7, 2010
Weak Weekday Wanderings
Sometimes things just don't go the way you planned. We had thought that this week maybe we'd get a train to someplace warm and sunny, find a beach or a pool and hang out for a few days, but instead we're hanging around the apartment, sleeping, coughing, and occasionally getting out for a walk or an errand.
Yesterday we took some books we had finished to one of the used book stores in the neighborhood and picked up some new ones to get us through the next week or so. I now find myself re-reading Raymond Chandler's "The High Window", something I last read in college, when I spent a lot of time on detective movies and fiction. Gene picked up a copy of Kerouac's "On The Road". A visit to the X-ray clinic and a stop at the grocery store was the rest of that exciting day.
This morning was a general strike day and rather than hope a bus might choose to run, we hopped into a cab to cross the river for Gene's doctor's appointment. This is a doctor I saw a couple of years ago when I was last sick enough to need one and we like and trust him. He's Irish originally and has practiced here for decades. I must admit it was nice to deal with this medical stuff in English for a change. And in English, it's a touch of pneumonia.
A new antibiotic prescription, a cup of tea at the café next door to the office, and another cab ride home, where we had to hit two pharmacies before we found one that had the right medication in stock. A quick stop at Monoprix for the makings of chicken soup and a nice long rest before our new femme de menage arrived. When we rented this place we were told we had to continue to employ the landlady's cleaning lady, a nice woman, but a talkative one, "bavarde" in French, and it was clear she'd get little done if we stayed home, so we spent a couple of hours in a favorite café with Kerouac and Chandler.
And here's where something nice happened. I had ducked into a small newspaper/stationer shop to buy some envelopes and spoke a few words in French to the young man at the cashier's stand. Gene came in a few minutes later and naturally we spoke in English. The young man looked at me oddly after hearing the English. "Excuse me," he said, "but you have a perfect accent. I've never heard such a good one."
I blushed and beamed and thanked him.
Now that I think about it, I wonder if he was referring to my accent in English.