Saturday, March 31, 2007

on march

Early Monday evening I left the Musée du Louvre and made my way to the Metro to meet Michelle for dinner. I was certain of the direction back to the station and decided I could therefore vary the route a bit. As I walked along, I saw people sitting on a bank below the walkway, and a paved ramp leading down to where they were. The lure of the river, the Seine, was impossible to resist and I took the ramp, found a spot on a platform above the walkway, and sat a while watching the Parisians, the tour boats on the river, the ducks, and the age-old buildings surrounding it all.

Whenever I find myself in a distant and unanticipated place I think of my mother. She never left the United States, spent most of her adult life trying to wrangle Toledo into something more kind to her. I think of her and feel sad because she died a month after her 49th birthday and there was so much she never got a chance to see. When I mentioned this to Michelle as I stood underneath the Arc de Triomphe the day before, she told me (and I have heard many times) that I take my mother with me and, in that way, she gets to see what I see. I believe this and I don't. Perhaps something I need to reconcile.

Though I wrestle with what my mother's life was, I deeply appreciate how my life's fortune points my feet in directions I don't expect to walk. Sitting beside the Seine on a beautiful day in March filled me with a sense of excitement, a friendly expectancy about the days to come. And maybe a little, just a little, I felt my mother smiling for us both.

5 comments:

Ellen Bloom said...

Lovely post, Ms. Carla. I often think I'm seeing things thru my recently passed Dad's eyes. He taught me a lot about vision.

Can't wait to hear more about your trip to Paris! Welcome back.

afrowalking said...

Touched my heart to read xoxov

Mrs. Mommy said...

Paris!!!
Wow!! Knowing you've been there is so utterly wonderful! I've always dreamed of going to Paris. I guess I'll be able to visit "vicariously" through your trip...I look forward to your pics! I am sure that you did feel your Mother's smile while you were there. I know she's proud of you.
--Again, I'll be back to see those trip pics!

p.s.
All is good out here with the hubby & 3 lil' divas.

sappmama said...

Hey, gang! I had a great time. Yes, yes, yes, photos soon!

(Hi, Mrs. Mommy!)

laurie said...

I love you, but not in a weird way, I promise ;)

This was an awesome, awesome piece you wrote.