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March 26, 1994

Today was a bit different, I got the hour-long course I'd pushed for on the theory and practice of urinary incontinence therapy. . . Merci­fully not over breakfast or lunch as originally suggested! Then 2 hours of written translation and I was free for the day at 2:20 P.M., with request to be back on duty at 8:00 P.M.

I walked from the hotel across the Pont Alexandre III (via the rue and place François Ier, the latter of which, in a formal way, is quite beauti­ful), then bypassed the Invalides, down the rue de Varenne, circled round and round St.‑Sulpice looking for Aux Charpentiers, eventually finding it on rue Mabillon, but not before having 2 separate conversations with the same pair of guys sitting on a bench on the place St‑S. They sent me different ways, we laughed about it, the 2d time they sent me the right way. Bought some books on Romanesque art, and surprisingly, found a comprehensive archeological handbook to St-Bertrand!

Hare Krishnas crossing the Bd. St-Germain brought shopkeepers out of their shops and pedestrians to a near-total halt. Only about 15 of them, not particularly exotic even, a couple, uncharacteristically, looking preoccupied or a bit bored — hardly anything to stare at.

Stopped at a nice very Parisian café in the rue Buci, down the street a bit from the open-air market and right next to a florist with stalls out over the sidewalk. I had a dozen snails and 25 cl of carafe white wine (good, for once). With her mother, rather ill-behaved because bored little girl singing over and over again a tune thru a rolled-up poster. Mozart, Magic Flute — hey, this is Europe, not Chicager.

Gradually chillier day, I walked to Notre Dame past​1 a pastry shop and past some of the bouquinistes; ate my one pastry (the others I got for [. . .] who likes his food) in the Square Jean-XXIII. I didn't stay long, but it was a mini-procession of people in pairs taking pictures of each other with the apse of the cathedral behind them; it was rather like being at a model show. Particularly good to see was a pair of Russian men along with all the Germans and Spaniards and Americans.

Just the time to get a subway from St-Michel back to the hotel; within 4 minutes I was back out, semi-work dinner; abortive computer training session followed curtailed by non-arrival of computers; so up to my room, talked to James, news in the usual barrage of languages, and voilà, finito.

Note in the Diary:

1 noting that "past", in the case of a pastry shop, has a rather extended meaning with me!!

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Page updated: 7 Dec 20