Over the past few years, I have inscribed my Landor perfume bottle with ‘London – Tokyo – Milan’. And now ‘Paris’. I am the non-weary traveller. But this city never fails to take me by surprise.
Apple-Z. Zut alors! Where once I undid, I now Apple-W, close windows. So I Apple-A. But instead of having it All, I Quit. QWERTY has become AZERTY and I never knew it mattered.
Inspired? It’s the tiny things – the shape of the key that unlocks my door, the heels that were so jaunty in Hoxton are tat on these trottoirs. Yet everything becomes vivid, vibrant, curious as I reconsider the fluency of my life. Senses and synapses scrubbed and raw. Inspired?
‘Bonjour’ and ‘Salut’ chime as I peel past patisseries full of black magic. Supermarkets give an intimate glimpse into Parisian culture; the yoghurt aisle’s familiar pastel sweep of slender body promises now send postcards from another home turf. The Anglo altar to houmous and rapid dipping has been usurped by shelves of dried toast over which no TV could ever be heard.
Le weekend. The phone simply doesn’t ring.
Inspired. Another city steeped in other lives and now I, too, walk these pavements. Apple-Z, where I once looked back, I now find Apple-N, Windows New.