After my Ispahan adventure on the 19th of March, I woke up on the morning of the 20th with my toe in very bad shape. I’m a little embarrassed to admit this, but I immediately called my mother in Australia (as opposed to my mother in, erm, Uzbekistan… yep). I told her I had to come home early because I couldn’t bear the thought of struggling with the toe for another month (oh, Hannah, how little faith you had in yourself).
Luckily for me, my mother is a rather calm and supportive lady, and she pointed out that I had been walking around for 8ish hours every day since my first visit to the Parisian hospital. Which, you know, isn’t altogether great for healing. She suggested that instead of throwing in the travel-towel, I could perhaps spend two days keeping my foot elevated and see whether the toe calmed down at all.
Fine, Mum, be clever and rational. I might remind you that I’m still the one with the university medal *sticks out tongue*. (Fat lot of good that’s doing me, though. I wonder if I could pawn it?)
Conveniently for my keep-it-simple-and-elevated plans, my hostel was situated right near Paris’ MK2 cinemas, which screen movies in the original (and therefore often English) language. I trotted/hobbled over to one of these cinemas, first stopping at a bookstore to buy Pride and Prejudice in French for my mother’s birthday, and Le Petit Prince in French for myself.
For anyone interested, I went to see A Single Man, and I can state unequivocally that I sobbed like a baby throughout the entire film. While this was partly to do with my already-tenuous emotional state, it was also because the movie tapped into a lot of buried thoughts/memories that wouldn’t mean much to anyone else. (Eyebrows, tying ties, puppies, to name a few. And yes, I never in my life would have expected eyebrows to make me cry.)
After the movie, I had a restorative Parisian moment:
My Restorative Parisian Moment…
… involves sitting by the Canal de l’Ourcq with two delicious tofu-burger-patties from Canal Bio (also situated in the 19ème), happily munching away while people- and dog-watching. (I particularly liked the woman who wore a voluminous and brightly-coloured ankle-length skirt with sneakers, and the business man who strode past carrying nothing but an enormous bag of fresh broad beans. Who needs a briefcase when you can have beans?).
I planned to finish my day of quietude by hunkering down in the hostel with my laptop and several boxes of cookies and macarons. This went mostly to plan, but the night did shift a bit when I met a friendly fellow from Alabama. We talked for hours that night, although I must admit a good half-hour of that was taken up with me shaking my head and stuttering:
“I’m sorry, you have a plane? An, I’m sorry, what, a plane? Really? You have your own plane? I’m sorry, what do you mean by your own plane? You have a plane?”
But more on plane-boy when we get to March 21st.