February 3rd, 1990
Jean Jacques Flat
Yes, I’m in Paris and as enticing as it sounds, it’s four in the morning and I’m in the tiniest bedroom ever, surrounded by piles of books that are covered in dust as thick as the pages and several what I’d call “artistic” looking framed photographs of very alluring females.
I’d love to sum up my feelings since I landed in the City of Light, with words like “fantastique” and “incroyable” but alas all I can say is that I feel like un poisson fou hors de l’eau (a foolish fish out of water.)
What was I thinking coming here? How did I allow my silly, girly romantic notions to get the better of me and make me think this was a good idea? Don’t get me wrong, Jean Jacques has been more than pleasant and a gentleman but it was clear to me tonight that he and his friends are way out of my league.
For a start, each and every one of them are gorgeous. And lithe, ugh, so, so lithe. Even the men. The women were classically French looking, all dressed to the nines with what appeared to be minimal effort, the sort of look I could never in a million years pull off, even if I was draped entirely in Chanel.
The men, ah, the men. What to say about the men? Mostly older, around Jean Jacques age (38) and all very accomplished in the music/art/media world. Just like Jean Jacques, they were polite and certainly went out of their way to make me feel welcome but if anything, the attention only served as a reminder of how much out of my element I felt.
In the past I’ve managed to keep up a conversation in French but tonight, I couldn’t seem to find my voice, let alone the right words. The more I thought about what I was trying to say, the more difficult it became and I worked myself into such a state that I gave up. Instead, in an effort to keep up with the glitterati, I used gestures and facial expressions while I observed the manner in which they sipped cocktails and nibbled on food I can only describe as delectable.
Jean Jacques was sitting across the table from me, holding court, talking faster than my schoolgirl French could keep up with. Several times, he caught my eye and mouthed, “Ca va?”
“Oui,” I lied, smiling.
Back here, I feigned exhaustion, declined Jean Jacques offer of “nighttime cap,” and was in too much of a hurry to be alone, to correct him. We said goodnight and when I closed the bedroom door, I sighed a deep sigh of relief and slowly began to decompress.
Roll on morning, I need to go home.