Parisienne scene Apr26


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Parisienne scene

No. 1 Rue Auber, 75009 Paris:

Entracte Opera opposite the Academie Nationale de Paris. There’s some kind of commotion, a congregation of youths on the steps. I spot a Chinese tourist with one of those awful selfie-sticks, a boy with wide-brimmed black hat, a performing hat, takes it and attempts a photo with the facade behind. Locals walk by and look down at our table and see a breadbasket, a beer, a glass of wine and the little dish of butter and me, writing this, in my little black notebook.

A black guy with a silk scarf and blue headphones wears cool sunglasses and saunters past; a mother and daughter hold hands, trailed by their husband, father respectively at a distance of ten feet. A moustachioed man rubs his jaw at the bus stop to our left; a rickshaw pursued by a bicycle; talk of how delicious the bread is; three Asian women cackle in the corner behind us as the food arrives.

An old guy comes along to talk with our waiter. The hair on his head is erect, deliberately so – bouffant? – like he’d just come from a bungee jump or maybe he jumped off a high wall and passed through a bucket of hair gel on the way down. A girl passes with tissue shoved up each nostril; another man who looks a lot like Ho Chi Minh passes two Asians who smile at his appearance. One of them has a duck packpack, trying to stand on her boyfriend’s heels as a joke.

Because of the tables, pedestrians have to slow as they bunch up in front of us and they take a moment to look at us looking at them. There’s a pink 81 and black 95 bus stop just to our left and people run to get to the queues.