Sunday, 20 September 2009

Paris, then and now

Then was January 1989, now September 2009. Then I was on a very short school trip for French A-level students, more recently visiting the Sorbonne for a medieval history conference. Then I could speak French (or so I thought), and couldn't get anyone to speak French to me; more recently I couldn't get anyone to speak English to help me out with my completely corroded school-girl French (never so embarrasing as in an internet cafe - why had I not considered that I had no internet or computer-related vocabulary to dredge up from the back of my mind?) Then, being a self-hating almost 17 year old, I hardly ate; last week, being a pregnant lady of six months, that was hardly the case. But there were parallels too. Then we mainly saw the outside of buildings (presumably because we could not afford to go inside); and this month I again mainly saw the outside of buildings, having been in town for a different purpose than to sight-see. So Paris remains to be 'done'. Perhaps sooner than in another twenty years, mais qui sait?

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