Monday, September 19, 2011

Birthday Blessings

It's always been my belief that a birthday celebrated away from home doesn't count towards the years piling up quickly in one's wake and so for the last decade or so I've celebrated most of mine in Paris.  However this one in spite of my best efforts is happening here in Berkeley, although as a friend pointed out, now that I live half the time in Paris, maybe birthdays don't age me in either place...or maybe in both.

In any case, it turned out to be a gorgeous sunny day here at Chez Hilgard, the house where I'm lucky enough to be recuperating while its owners go to Paris instead.  Much as I love our little Parisian apartment, I'd move this place to St-Germain des PrĂ©s in a minute; beautiful and comfortable, it's the perfect place for someone alternating between napping, pill-popping and staring at the view of the bay.

From what I can tell, I've also gotten the better deal in terms of weather, sunny and warm, a lazy afternoon spent with my sister, whom I miss like crazy when I'm in Paris, and dinner shared with F. and M. at the much talked about Cotogna in SF, which was at least as good as any Parisian bistro I've tried in a while.  Life is good.

At the same time, friends in Paris are keeping us up to date on what they're up to so we can imagine we're there with them.  I was touched today to learn from L., who visits our favorite Au Comptoir du Relais religiously on her Paris visits, that one of our favorite servers there was so happy to have news of us that she served L. a glass of wine on the house.  How sweet is that? Or maybe it was because of how sweet L. herself is. (I suspect that bolt has been shot, by the way; I wouldn't imagine any more freebies for anyone else dropping in to say hi from Shelli and Gene, would you?  Clever L.)

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