The beauty of not setting yourself a destination, is that you never get lost.
I walked all day, with no other goal than following my footsteps instinctively. No map, no sightings checklist. I don’t want to be just another tourist.
It was a bit awkward at first… Stepping out of Concorde Metro Station, as if the earth was throwing me out from its womb right into the heart of the city, I knew I would feel it, but I didn’t expect it to be so crisp and clear. A slap right in the face.
And I turned the other cheek.
Victor greets me with a friendly leg rub, as I light the candles on the patio table. I stretch a hand to pat him back, but the svelt silhouette is already disappearing behind the flower pots between my borrowed terrace and the neighbour’s.
Just out of the shower, the lavender smell of my body lotion blends well with the floral inner yard. Summer has stretched over fall, and I won’t be one to complain. It’s only been a little over twenty four hours, but I feel like I have spent a lot more time here.
A quick trip inside the house, and I return with a plating of cold cuts and cheese, and a glass of red wine. The candles light the ruby liquid, and I wonder what it would be like if I had someone to share it with, as I bring the glass to my lips for a first sip.
Out of the corner of my eye, I see your silhouette standing. I don’t dare looking up, aknowledging that I noticed you’re looking out your window. What are you thinking? Are you wondering what I am doing there, alone in the darkness?
That’s exactly what struck me when I blended in the crowd of pedestrians earlier. All of a sudden, I realized how alone I really was. No friendly face was expecting me. No one was waiting for me anywhere in the city. Not one soul wanted me there. I didn’t belong here, yet I didn’t look like a foreigner. I could have been a ghost, things wouldn’t have looked any different.
Have you considered that? Could you imagine watching over a mysterious fantom from your apartment? You wouldn’t be too far from the truth. Would it trouble you to know that?
Most people fear aloneness. I don’t.
That’s what I came here for. To be absolutely anonymous, free from everybody else’s opinion. And that’s what it felt like, while I meandered along the Seine. I felt alone and small. Staring at the Louvre, thinking about all the famous masters’ pieces exhibited there, I knew how insignificant a human being I was, standing there.
Spreading blue cheese and a drop of honey on a crouton, I glance up again. You’re not moving, and I consider waving, but it would break the moment, wouldn’t it?
I didn’t bother taking a single picture during my long walk today. Tourists take photographs for two reasons; to show what they saw, and to remember… Neither really matter to me. I don’t intend on building memories here. Rather wash the past away.
I’m merely a wanderer. A ship just a wave away from its wreck.
But I am not ready to sink just yet.
Picking up my empty plate and glass, I blow the candles and head for the door. Peeking over my shoulder as I turn the handle, I see the light turned down in your apartment.
Would you be disappointed, if I didn’t show up tomorrow? Are you enjoying the weird entertainment?
I guess we’ll have to wait and see.
Wait and see…