Every time I come to Paris, I notice all the differences again, for a while, and then it all seems ‘normal,’ just a familiar part of my life. Yesterday I wrote in the morning, had lunch, went to the supermarket a couple of blocks away to buy—what? toilet paper, garbage bags—then took my grocery bag and a book to the Luxembourg Garden, found a sunny chair up by the orchard, and read (kafka, ‘The Burrow’; a new book by Cixous that I found here when I arrived). My usual spot under the two sequoias. A group of high school kids were talking beside me—one boy very loud, drowning out the girls, later one of the girls, very loud. Eventually someone higher up towards the southern rim of the Garden left, and I moved to their chair (musical chairs), later I moved again in search of sun. And still later, when the sun went down behind the buildings, I went to the indoor market to buy a head of lettuce and some vegetables to stock, because Sunday afternoon and Monday most food stores are closed. Parsnips (panais) and turnips, must be winter!
Forgot to mention that I sat for a bit on the edge of the lawn that contains the bust of Verlaine, scowling atop his column, with a pigeon sitting on his head.
And now, 7 pm, home from a walk on the Right Bank Quai of the Seine, which was packed with people, of all ages, walking, cycling, skateboarding, roller skating, scootering (electric and other0 hoverboarding, and all other means of transportation you can think of, except cars. I went not quite as far as the Arsenal, sat for a while, finished reading Kafka’s “The Burrow,’ lay down for a while on a bench and looked at the coach doors on the buildings on the Ile St Louis, and walked back to the foot bridge between the Louvre and the Institut, returned to the Left Bank, and home.