Ever since I can remember (about 65 years), I have been a voracious reader. As a girl, I was considered a bit nerdy, but the heroines in my books lived such romantic and exciting lives that I grew up craving different places, different foods and different languages. For a Canadian girl, the study of French was mandatory but while others were unwilling students, I felt that by learning a second language, I was giving myself an opportunity for a second more exciting life.
|apartment building in Vancouver (could be Paris??)|
Of course, I was an adolescent girl in a family of 4 children. My parents weren't going to send me to France. But I became expert at taking the bus from my rural suburb to downtown where I could find Paris
closer to home. I would buy a French fashion magazine on Robson street, a pastry from a patisserie, and I looked for buildings with French names. I also wanted to smoke Gitanes or Gauloises but I never did.
|eating solo in a restaurant (with wine, bien sûr)|
Many years have passed. International travel seems a distant memory (2 years). My 70th birthday is next week and I fear that opportunities for travel (as for every experience) are diminishing. I'm that same girl lookingfor romance and adventure. Unfortunately, with Covid-19, I am required to summon my adolescent talent for finding l'exotisme in the community.
I enjoy eating alone or with friends in restaurants. I prefer neighbourhood spots where they call me by name and know that I will want a second glass of pinot gris. Funny, sometimes a stranger sends me a glass of wine. They never move to join me but perhaps they are kindred spirits who just want to send a lady a glass of wine. Older men can be romantics too!
|cooking in my Staub cocotte |
|scarves can definitely transport me|
I am a "get dressed" kind of woman. I always wear scarves and accessories. One of my favourite activities
is folding and pressing my scarves. In Paris, I used to pass the Diwali stores and I have collected many bright pieces of "neck art". One of my favourites is my Chagall opera scarf. I wore it yesterday for a walk on the dyke.
The last 2 years have been difficult for people of all ages. My mother has slipped into the "frail elderly"
phase of life. She lives alone with a fear of the virus. It seems like a short time ago that she was an active and attractive woman. My daughter is middle aged. How the years pass!
Dreamers are always dreamers whatever their age. I still have a stack of books to read. Many of them are set in different places and different times. I know that our time to travel will come again. In the meantime, I'll just have to use my imagination.