Paris! 2

We made an impressive spectacle, emerging in full bridal splash as one after another of our cabs pulled up to the entrance of Au Vieux Paris d’Arcole.

An emissary was dispatched to announce our arrival when the door burst open and Georges flew out in a fluster of French to greet us. Wrapped in his exuberant hug, Joy looked like Beauty with her Beast! Comical, cartoonish even, from the white curls springing uncontrolled from his head, to the overstated nose, pouchy cheeks, and ponderous jowels, Georges, taken in parts, was a troll. But mere seconds later, we all loved him.

“Please, follow me to your private salon,” and we did, up a winding, storybook staircase lit by amber lanterns. Once there, Georges passed cups of a savory broth and poured champagne like a Frenchman!

P1080389The first of many toasts began here, to the night, to the future, to Paris, and to the bride and groom who made this exceptional experience possible.

P1080388There were other delicacies offered by Georges and his minions which we nibbled and slurped with giddy abandon. My eyes wandered over each one present. They were chattering or listening in happy enjoyment, and I was awed by the utter incomprehensibility of this random group being brought together by fate, or perhaps, by love.

Georges’ next appearance summoned us to dine. Once again we trailed his awkward form into a room grander, if possible, than the first. Red damask wallpaper, gilt mirrors, and a table glittering with glassware brought gasps of delight. In a conversation earlier that day, Joy had recounted to me some of the e-mail conversations she and Georges had exchanged while preparing for this night. He wrote that wine was included with dinner. That wasn’t enough information for Joy. How much wine? she wanted to know. His answer, Unlimited! satisfied her.

P1080391

P1080390Joy and Kellen presided over the evening like royals. They had asked each of us to prepare a blessing or some words of advice to read to them at dinner. I debated…blessing? Words of advice? Blessing? After all, with my track record, who am I to be dispensing marital advice? But in a sudden flush of defiance I stamped my mental foot. “No! Dammit! If I haven’t learned something from all that effort, shame on me!” I went with advice. They’ve had my blessing for years!

I am embarrassed to say I don’t remember what I ate. It was good, but the wine was better, and there was so much of it!

What a day. My sparkly shoes walked miles with only one blister.

Back at the apartment at last, there were groans of relief as corsets came off and Kellen ditched his tie. As soon as she was freed from her bridal finery, Joy’s voice echoed from the kitchen.

“I’m going to make pizza.”

“You’re kidding, right? Tomorrow is the Eiffel, and another late night dinner. Wouldn’t it be good to maybe sleep a little?”

“Oh no! I’m hungry for pizza and we picked one up when we did the food shopping.”

So Joy made pizza and the three of us sat in the glossy, red kitchen, in the chic Paris apartment at 36 Rue de Turbigo, sharing the night until 4:30 a.m. That probably wasn’t smart…I told myself as I dragged the blankets over my body without bothering to wash my face or brush my teeth. But this is Paris after all…

 

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3 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. sageblessings
    Dec 15, 2014 @ 08:22:10

    I so enjoyed this, especially the line observing those all gathered by love. Photos surely bring one on the adventure. I couldn’t help but compare your curling up under the blanket in Paris to your doing the same thing in Kintimani but for such totally different reasons😃

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  2. Lottie Nevin
    Dec 16, 2014 @ 12:19:27

    Sherry! how wonderful, what an amazing time you had in Paris. I spent 7 months there after leaving school, I LOVE that city and can quite imagine the scene that you write about so beautifully here. Who is George? I’ve got so many questions….and I love you even more knowing that you went to bed not cleaning your teeth or taking off your make-up – that really shows what a splendid day it was. Please write more about your visit 🙂

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