I am in Paris, in a small hotel just off Avenue St. Germain des Pres, and have just spent a very long day at a symposium conducted entirely in French. I indulged in a  kind of magical thinking...convincing myself that if I sat there and listened for a long time, I would begin to understand French. Did not work. And then...when it was my turn, in the afternoon...for an hour and a half...I not only couldn't understand it, but couldn't speak it. Luckily the wonderful woman who translates my books was on the stage with me and together we kept the audience of 300+ French librarians from rising up en masse and leaving.

This was my busiest day of "work"...tomorrow I have a lunch, and Wednesday a lunch...but from now on there is plenty of time to roam. On Friday my granddaughter arrives by train from Germany to celebrate her 18th birthday with me over the weekend.

My little hotel is in a neighborhood filled with small clothing shops. Boutiques, I guess one would say. I mentioned that my granddaughter's birthday is coming. Did I mention that she has very green eyes? Immediately around the corner is a shop window with a gorgeous green dress in it...the same shade as her eyes.

The Dress....and...


..the eyes.

Wouldn't I be a great Oma if I bought it for her?  I went so far as to inquire, actually. The price? 4500 Euros. In dollars? $6,199.

Guess not.

Anyway, when she arrives, she wants to go to flea markets so that is what we'll do Saturday. And maybe find a green dress?