The Cat Man of Rue Saint-Sabin


I know that I have been lax in my narrative duties, for which I apologize. If I have any readers left out there, today’s your lucky day because I’m going to write about my last two days in Paris!

When we all had recovered from our long (ha!) day at Disneyland, and rolled out of bed, we made our way down to the BHV. Granny needed to buy a scarf, and mother needed to buy a bra, so, it was a rather odd shopping outing. While mother was perusing the lingerie, Jessica and I went and looked at the housewares. The very first thing we came across was a large display featuring an assortment of drying racks. This led to an embarrassing fit of giggles.

Poor mother had searched long and hard for a drying rack. She looked through several Monoprix’s, then a hardware store, and even the BHV, but she never found anything until she was at a hardware store near my apartment. Jessica and I snickered and ran back to mother to tell her of our discovery and to wonder how she could have possibly been so blind. She didn’t find it nearly so amusing as I did.

Mother found her undergarments, so we went down a level where I returned to the magical land of forks and spoons and knives. I bought a matching spoon and fork that are kind of optical illusions. They look like they have wide handles, but they are really thin. After you see them once, you no longer see the effect, but it never fails to impress people. After I finished my flatware shopping we went downstairs to get Granny a scarf.

Around this time, Jessica flipped her bitch switch and became angry at everyone and everything. She insisted that she needed a pop and she needed it now. So, mother had me escort her across the street to Quick Burger so she could buy herself a drink. I did so, begrudgingly, she is a horror to be around when she is like that. Once inside the restaurant, she became shy and insisted that I order her drink for her. I told her that I wouldn’t, but I told her how to do it in French. This wasn’t good enough for her, so she burst into tears and stormed out the doors. She stood against the wall, tears streaming down her face as I tried to pretend I wasn’t related to the crazy American. I can’t remember if she ever got her drink. All I know is that she caused major familial embarrassment.


We all walked to see the stone lions in front of City Hall and then decided that it was time to eat. It seems that when we are on vacation, it is always time to eat! Can any of you guess where we went? If you said Iolanda’s, you would be correct, and I’d be shocked if you were wrong. I think it might be Jessica’s favorite restaurant.

It was a bittersweet meal, I knew that I wouldn’t eat there for a long time again. I’ve no doubt the whole family will be back there someday in the future, probably not too far down the road…at least I hope not. While we were there, I tried to help Jessica out. She complained that she had thin lips, so, I offered to draw her a new lip line, which I did, with wonderful results, but she couldn’t handle her new fiercer look and wiped off my hard work with disdain. Such rudeness. Granny had a beer, which she enjoyed. I tried it, too, to me it tasted like a dry white wine that had been strained through straw.

When we were done with our meal, we went down to the little souvenir shops and did a little tourist shopping. I got a t-shirt that reads, “I♥PARIS.” It was tacky, but I like it. Then I bought prints of some very nice watercolors of my favorite locations in Paris.

Jessica and I tired of shopping, so we crossed the road and went over to the river. Granny and Ma soon met us and we walked back towards the train. Ma stopped back at Iolanda’s to take a picture with our waiter, who teased Jessica, so I liked him. After that, we took the RER home because it’s faster and much more comfortable.

Back in the apartment, we began to pack, but I was unable to for some reason. I started to do things, but I just couldn’t finish anything. In the end, everybody else packed for me. I think I was having some kind of psychological reluctance to leave even though I was ready to see Tiger and Shadow and Clea and Pa again.

Mom had to go to the dry cleaner’s and Granny needed to buy some snacks so we went to Monoprix while Ma washed some clothes. It was relaxing to walk the streets late at night and see all the lights blazing. We were soon at the grocery store and amused ourselves picking out odd things to bring home for father. The odder the better for him. I bought a box of Oasis juice boxes, which I was very excited about. Of all Paris, I think that Oasis is the thing that I will miss the most. It’s just…so good.

It was closing time so we checked out and made our way home. I took a shortcut back to the apartment, but Ma wasn’t back, and she had the key. We decided to go to the dry cleaner’s to find her, so back down the steps we went and over to the dry cleaner’s. She wasn’t in there, then Granny said that this wasn’t the dry cleaner’s she went to. I didn’t know of any other place, so, I had Granny tell me where to go. She didn’t know where the hell it was, so, we just wandered the streets.

As we went down Rue Saint-Sabin, the road where I live, a very drunk, or high, or retarded, or just strange young man started doing what appeared to be the Thriller dance towards me. When he was inches from my faces he began to act like a cat and hissed. This made me laugh and we kept walking, but Granny and Jess were terrified.

We finally found the dry cleaner’s, but she wasn’t there either. We assumed we missed her on the way there, so we traipsed back to the apartment and sat on the steps in darkness. I felt incredibly stupid being locked out of my own home. A very drunk, he reeked of it, old man appeared, who I had never seen and invited us up to his room to have a glass of champagne in honor of Franco-American relations. I politely declined and decided I should go look for mother. I was the only one who really could go look for her. Granny and Jess have no sense of direction nor could they say more then, hello, in French. So, leaving a sobbing Jessica and a whiny Granny, I went back down the road towards the dry cleaner’s.

There she was, standing on the street corner, looking around for us. To this day, I’m still not sure what happened, I suppose we just kept missing each other.

Anyway, after this we were all exhausted and went to bed for the last time in the City of Lights.



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