Yesterday morning the fog covered the hills above the village like a cupped hand. Everything was a bit muted, even the birds seemed to be humming under their wings. It took me back to my few hours roaming through Paris not so long ago.
For then too it was a gray day but my heart began pumping it with color so that I was painting outside the lines.
You see, I had a friend to meet. Isn't it something...an anticipation that builds until it whirls like a carrousel?
I could hardly focus on my surroundings but focus I did or at least I tried. To see Paris for Paris' sake...
...and that meant taking in not one but two art exhibitions in the space of nearly as many hours.
It was exceptional to see the City of Light as loved by the photographers of the Magnum collective. So many of the city's most classic moments were captured and defined by photographers such as Henri Cartier-Bresson that I felt floating free in a past where I felt I belonged despite having never been.
It was a bit of time out of time until I stepped outside the Hotel de Ville and was reminded of recent events that had shocked the world, putting me smack back into 2015.
And yet La Conciergerie was mere steps away and I could nearly hear Marie Antoinette crying to be freed from her prison cell there...
...or Audrey Hepburn joyously shouting "Take the picture! Take the picture!" while floating past The Winged Victory of Samothrace at the Louvre.
Is this why we love Paris?
It is the host to so many of our stories - the imaginary, the real or those dancing in-between.
All we have to do is somehow place ourselves in that unique landscape, put a finger to the wind and pull on the blur.
As the night shrouded Paris in the fogs opposite, I boarded the train for Provence.
The doors to the TGV slid together, shutting sound and the wheels rolled out until I couldn't hear them anymore. I took my camera out of my bag and set it in my lap. It held my story - or at least what it had been for those few hours. My cheek felt cool against the window as the bright lights dissolved. Paris was letting me go.
"Au revoir," I whispered. Until we meet again.