Speaking of anxiety, I downloaded a romantic comedy to watch on my new Kindle Fire during the car ride, “Midnight in Paris”, a film written and directed by Woody Allen and for me Woody Allen is synonymous with anxiety neurosis. The film was set in Paris of all places, as if the title didn’t give it away.
Decided to watch it after darkness fell so I plugged in my noise-cancelling headphones and turned up the volume. The main character, played by Owen Wilson, is your typical, Woody Allen-ish neurotic, romantic, unfulfilled writer. He’s a successful Hollywood screenwriter but what he really wants to do is write the perfect novel. He’s there with his beautiful, shallow, pretentious fiancé and her rich, conservative, disconnected-from-reality, parents.
One of the reasons I chose the film is because I love Paris, we’ve been there several times and I have many wonderful memories of wandering through her narrow, romantic streets, strolling along the Seine, sitting in her bistros and sidewalk cafes. I drank plenty of wine in those cafes in Paris, rationalizing my consumption by the fact that wine was a part of the prix fixe menu.
I also have memories of the day we planned to go to the Louvre but couldn’t because the workers were on strike. Strikes are something I can always count on when visiting Europe. We did go to Louvre some years later, and I could spend a lifetime in that museum. That and the many other museums in and around Paris.
The film showed two of my favorites, Rodin’s Sculpture Garden, and Monet’s Giverney. I figured that even if the film was bad, I could still look at some pretty pictures and I did. I enjoyed the film in a semi-conscious state and was somewhat bored and annoyed by Owen Wilson’s antics. He’s so one-dimensional.
I followed the main character’s time-travel trip back to the 1920′s Paris society with interest. There he meets some of his favorite authors, Ernest Hemingway, F. Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald, Gertrude Stein, composer Cole Porter, Picasso, and a multitude of other now-famous artists, musicians, and writers. Flash back to memories of my 11th grade English class, “The Lost Generation“, taught by one of my all-time favorite teachers, Mr. Bursk. He introduced me to the literary and social culture of the great artists and writers of the Roaring Twenties. Among other things. Wonder whatever happened to Mr. Bursk. That was 38 years ago. Funny how vividly I recall details from so long ago but don’t ask me what clothes I wore yesterday. So glad I took that English course in high school, now all I need is a memory course. ;)
I dosed off a couple of times during the movie, and at one point I woke up when my husband was exiting the highway for dinner. Are you hungry? Moments later we were getting chicken at the drive-through at Zaxby’s, a southern tradition and a new experience for me. I had buffalo chicken fingers, not bad but a very sloppy food to eat in the front seat of a cramped Volkswagen turbo-diesel Sportswagen.
We finally crossed the bridge to the island, D driving and me with our two sweet dogs in my arms. I’d released them from their seat belts in the back earlier when we stopped at the huge Kroger’s off-island to buy a few groceries. The brave little-girl-dog was balanced on my knee with her head hanging out the open window, her ears flapping in the wind, whereas my timid little-boy-dog was nervous and trembling on my lap. I held him tight and reassured him that all was ok and we’d be there soon.
I always feel relief crossing that bridge.
We arrived at our beach house at about 11pm and the first thing I do when I get here at night is breathe in the fresh air and look up and marvel at all the twinkling stars above me. Thank God it was a clear night. Thank God we are finally here. Thank God for the beauty of this place.
I’m praying for a peaceful holiday and a few days to relax with my husband before our friends arrive on Wednesday. I’m also looking forward to driving up next week to a meeting that Syd attends. It will be great to meet him, a fellow recovery blogger that I so admire.
This has been a long post, longer than suggested so I split it into two parts. I was in a writing mood. I need to seize those moments. If I was in Paris in the 1920′s I might sit around drinking, talking, and writing in dark, smoky, literary cafes. Instead I blog from inside my house out into the blogosphere. The drinking part is long gone and that’s a good thing.
I wish for all of you a wonderful holiday if you celebrate this season. Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Happy Kwanzaa, and Happy Winter Solstice!!! I hope everyone is enjoying love, peace and light during this sometimes stressful, but beautiful-if-we-let-it-work-its-magic, season.