Day 9: Letter to a friend There were a host of reasons to sally forth in the direction of Shakespeare & Company after 12:00--so I went. I walked, because even an hour of yoga every day can not make up for the delicious food I encounter at every turn: chocolate, creme brûlée, chocolate, ripe apricots, cherries, sumptuous breads of all kinds, and have I mentioned the chocolate? It should be named "The city of chocolate" rather than "the city of lights." So I walk everywhere, which suits me anyway. No better way to let the city absorb me--like a corpuscle flowing into the river of life animating the body of this great, sultry, capricious, intense, evocative city--Paris is a grande lady, for sure. (I hope that circulatory metaphor appeals to your sensibility!) And did you know that Dickens was a great walker? Wonderful storyteller, creative genius, lousy husband--walked all through London at night. I always felt badly for his wife. I googlemapped the way and arrived at 12:50, spent ten minutes browsing the Paris history section, to no avail. Nothing useful to my purposes. Worse yet, when I rose from my squat, I found a piece of paper in my hands. "You've been followed. Be more careful." I walked out in front of store to see who could possibly have followed me. I trotted around on the street, saw no one suspicious, finally laid eyes on a slim man in a jean jacket disappearing into the crowds around Notre Dame. Was that the follower? Or Francois? Was there even a follower? Or were Francois and Mme Durand playing with me? I was nettled--and still didn't know about the Cezanne. Since I was close to the Seine anyways, I wandered toward Pont D'Alma and the Museum of the Sewers. The sewers beneath the city are extensive and impressive. Victor Hugo wrote about them, and he's liberally referred to on placards down there, in the depths of the earth. There's probably a play on "bowels" but I'm too tired to make it. And it was the stinkiest tour I've ever taken! Back at home, Jean-Sven and Angelique stopped by so I could congratulate Angelique on her brilliant performance at the Sunside Jazz Club. She does have a glorious alto! Which she used to great effect to comment on what she'd heard were my "delicious shoulders." Asked me to uncover one so she could taste for herself. I laughed and took it all as a big joke. My sense of humor has gotten me out of more than one tight corner--ely when I can laugh at myself. I remember your sense of humor as quite fun--engaging--before you battened down the hatches and threw it away.