Bottled and labeled in Paris. It was cold the day I found this twine on a narrow sidewalk in the Marais. A man making a delivery had just pulled up and rushed inside leaving the door to a workshop open. Inside a bee hive of activity. I remember the noise, but not what they were doing. My eyes were focused on the abandoned twine. 4 or 5 French high-school girls were screaming and laughing on the sidewalk behind me. I pretended to study my map. They passed me. One of them threw her water bottle at another. More screaming and adolescent high jinx. I waited. Bent down and collected my twine. Slipped it into my pocket. Collecting street trash shouldn’t fill me with such glee.
But it does.
The story of how I collected water from the Seine without falling in is coming soon.
I’ve been meaning to extoll the virtues of my map book. If you’re heading to Paris this is the only map you’ll need.
If you live in LA and want to add a great book about Paris to your collection, get yourself to VONS. I picked this up today for only 10 buckeroos. Really great if you’re heading to the city of light soon. Good restaurant recs, excellent photos from around the city, and some recipes. A real find.
The fact that I fell asleep outside while reading it late this afternoon should speak more to the 24 crafty kids I spent the day with than its interestingness. Next year when class size goes up to 29 students life is going to get very interesting. And loud. Louder.
I’m wanting to work on a Blurb book of my trip. Not for resale, just as a companion book to my travel journal. Projects.
Paper. A fine stack I picked up at a flea market in Paris. Impossibly gorgeous. Inky swirls and loops. Each letter seems to be dancing with the one next to it. Love.
Have already used some in my travel journal and will use more when I construct the next one. Yes I cut up and use the original paper. No I don’t care if it’s acid free. No I don’t make copies. Same with photos. I have no sense of preciousness when it comes to people I don’t know. I take great pleasure out of using every last bit of something and not saving a single solitary bit of anything. No literary French scholar or archivist is coming to my house after my demise to comb through my paper stash.
In the page below, the photo on the left and the book page on the right are more flea market finds.
How fun it was to collect those bits then come back to the apartment at night and paste them into my journal.
I’m jumping all over the place here, but I finished The Minpins by Roald Dahl the other day at school. There we were in the hushed classroom library. I had just finished reading about a boy who takes secret rides on a swan at night. Last page of the book. I came to this:
And above all, watch with glittering eyes the whole world around you because the greatest secrets are always hidden in the most unlikely places. Those who don’t believe in magic will never find it.
And I was so moved. I could hear my voice catch in my throat. A tear pool in the corner of my eye. I wrote those lines in my journal a few months ago, but didn’t know which Roald Dahl book they were from – or if they were even from a book. It was SO so lovely to stumble upon them as I was reading. There in the darkened room with my audience of little people. It felt like…magic.