c’est la vie

by jemma margaret

Hello and bienvenue to the 100th post.

I thought perhaps to try to think of a clever theme in celebration of this anniversary. This did not pan out. Instead I will pour the evening’s first glass of wine and tell you about my “grasse matinée” today–which lasted well into the afternoon.

The first Sunday of every month offers free admission to a number of Parisian art museums. Now that I am no longer 25 with a French student id, I must take advantage of these days. Today I ventured over to the 8th to see the Musée Rodin.

First, I had to cross a sea of marathon runners flooding down Rue de Rivoli. In New York advertisements paid for by banks and shoe companies foretell of marathons far in advance of the date. In Paris, all of a sudden, people with numbers on their shirts are moving slightly more quickly than usual down a car free street. I passed by a couple of participants peeing on the side of a building. “Vous-êtes parfaites!” a near-by announcer shouted encouragingly into his microphone.

Today was brisk but sunny, and on the small side streets of the Right Bank there was scarcely a soul in sight. There should be a marathon everyday! At a corner café I passed an older woman drinking a coffee and reading Le Monde, with her spaniel seated in the chair beside her. Then I walked by Edith Wharton’s once residence.

While I later saw enormous lines for the Louvre and Musée d’Orsay, I could walk straight into the Musée Rodin (with a brief bag search, of course). I had thought of going to the museum earlier in the year during one of their late Wednesday night openings, but I am glad that I waited since the garden is only open during the day and it’s the best part. I was also mightily impressed by Rodin’s digs. Not too shabby. In the special exhibition on Rodin’s marble work, the man in front of me reached out to lightly touch one of the pieces. I looked at him sternly and made a note of this.

Returning homeward I stopped into Terroirs d’Avenir, which was surprisingly barren of food although I did pause to think what I might be able to do with a burdock root.

For lunch I had extravagant plans to drink a huge hot chocolate at Jacques Genin. I had a hot chocolate there once before and enjoyed it enough to send Madeleine alone while I sat through an incomprehensible seminar about vibrating strings and differential equations. In between, we had both drunk the hot chocolate of Angelina (with a shot glass overfilling with whipped cream), and afterward neither of us could exactly determine which was better. I still don’t know, which means of course I’ll need to return to Angelina in the very near future. I’m afraid I’m trapped in a hot chocolate cycle and there may be no escape.

This might sound like a happy punishment (especially after one has seen about eight different renditions of the Gates of Hell in one morning)–but the potential dangers to the wallet and the waistline are innumerable.

And I would know, I study infinity.