Hello? Bonjour! Are you landing right on our house for some special reason? Has Père Nöel taken up balloon travel and the early delivery of holiday gifts?
Normally the French are very privacy conscious and even avert their eyes from the goings-on in a neighbor’s yard, but in this case I thought we might be about to have some unexpected guests. In the event, they waved cheerfully, as if there’d never been any danger of my needing to run for the fire extinguisher, and lumbered along their low, slow path.
Being a foreigner, I’m obsessed with opportunities to look into real French life. Usually I show you the windows that reveal glimpses of a French day. But today I’m thinking about how every window is set in a wall. Every glimpse in reveals my vantage point as an outsider.
Whether guarded by lions
or fiercely clinging roots,
tantalizing me with flowers, or
showing me who’s who when it comes to standing the test of time, these walls remind me of who I am. An upstart New Worlder with little history of her own. A person from a culture where letting it all hang out is viewed as a good thing. A visitor from a world where most of the walls are invisible.