I have landed!

November 14, 2023 • 5:41 pm

It’s so weird to wake up in Paris at 5:30 a.m. when it’s dark but they’re stocking the seafood store across the street from my hotel, and then return to Chicago for the night.  It was a long trip, enlivened mainly by my watching a terrific documentary on the young-adult author Judy Blume, about whom I knew exactly nothing. It was mesmerizing, with all kinds of interviews, including with grown ups who first wrote her when they were distressed children (there were thousands), many of whom kept up a correspondence for decades. I had no idea. .

A few photographic oddments from my return. First, a lovely Citroên Deux Chevaux, last produced in 1990. It was loaded up with Christmas gifts in the duty-free store:

I found this slogan on the wall of the departure gates a bit touching and cheesy at the same time: “Paris won’t forget you.” But of course it already has. . .

For some reason that sentence reminded me of this beautiful passage from Out Of Africa:

If I know a song of Africa, of the giraffe and the African new moon lying on her back, of the plows in the fields and the sweaty faces of the coffee pickers, does Africa know a song of me? Will the air over the plain quiver with a color that I have had on, or the children invent a game in which my name is, or the full moon throw a shadow over the gravel of the drive that was like me, or will the eagles of the Ngong Hills look out for me?

A guide to what are apparently all the countries whose passports you have to show when leaving:

Below: back home again in the land of Silly Coffees. This confirms my theory, which is mine, that all coffee will eventually wind up as some version of a milkshake or liquid candy.

The worst is the “Iced Gingerbread Oatmilk Chai.” Since when did oats give milk? “Time to go milk the oats, dear.”

12 thoughts on “I have landed!

  1. It’s good to hear that you’ve made it home safely.

    I believe that they recently released a film adaptation of Blume’s Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret. I also seem to recall that a lot of the women who had loved the original book and had grown up admiring her were disappointed with her recent positioning on the women’s rights / transgender issue, but I can’t remember the details.

      1. From that I read that she is trying to walk the middle ground. That is, Rowling should not be harassed but that she differs from Rowling in that she does not favor restrictions on trans women.
        Well, I can try to be charitable and say that she does not want to be “Rowling-ed”

        1. Yes, and she had a movie to promote. Lionsgate hired Dylan Mulvaney to interview her on TikTok.
          The take seemed to be that at 85 she wanted to be open-minded like the cool kids, but had not thought through the ramifications of gender ideology.

  2. Welcome back. Gee that seemed like a quick week. While you were in the air, a big anti- antisemitism protest in dc. Waiting to see how the media will play it.

  3. Welcome home!
    I favor a smaller chain of coffee shops for my liquid caffeinated candy (Bigby’s). It is much better and the serving sizes are larger. When I then sample a Starbucks’ I practically gag at the inferior flavors.

  4. The 2CV is very charming. Did you see any still running in Paris? Believe it or not, I saw one in operation here in Charlottesville, VA, but quite some number of years ago (15?). Brought back memories for me – I drove one on my honeymoon from Munich to Berchtesgaden. A terrifying couple hours on the Autobahn were followed by trying to get that car up some of the hills in the Alps. At about 30hp a true challenge!

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