“You’re wrong,” is what I wanted to tell her. “You don’t give people a chance. You’re just a spoiled snobbish whining brat without the slightest concern for someone else’s problems.” That’s what I wanted to say. Instead I shook my head, grinned, and pretended to sympathize with the Irish girl—the ridiculous things she said.
In the cool departing daylight of late summer’s afternoon, seated outside at a corner café, I wanted it sweet. I was swirling a third cognac, getting ‘up to speed’ as Parisians flew past, allegro ma non troppo, moving like the Métro. I had dubbed this motion the Paris Sidewalk Surge. Even our café crowd raced, running their rapid chatter of demi-tasse and cigarette ash, making the Paris al fresco experience feel like bathing with an immersed electrical appliance.
I sat with a young cousin who, for no valid reason, resented this stimulated city. Paris was…
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