High Heel Shoes

High Heel Shoes
Living in Paris is amazing.   Take a walk along the Seine and you’ll see people lounging all over the cement trying to soak up the last days of sunshine before the winter sets in.   Parisians are notorious for clipping trees and covering up the living (and unruly) with gray cement on which the high-heel-wearing female can stomp away loudly, taking her pouting lips with her.   One year ago, I left the US to live in Paris forever – or three years. It was summertime and I spent my afternoons drinking wine outside on blankets with my French friends and discussing everything under the sun! I was happy! Everything was just gorgeous! The tiny people living in my heart were happy, too. They giggled a lot and batted their eyes at the French babes riding by on old bicycles, their pant cuffs rolled up just above their amazing ankles. Ah Paris! I had a goal. I would marry one of those Frenchies and have cute bilingual babies with him…after a million and one nights of fantastic love-making that is!  After having lived in Latin America and Spain, public displays of affection were nothing new or shocking to me. I mostly ignored it. Even when I first arrived to Paris and people, both old and young, were feeling each other up on the crowded metros or sprawled out on the park benches at all hours of the day and night! I just figured, what with the wine, all of those tales by the French poets, high heels hitting pavement…that people couldn’t help themselves – like the pigeons!   Once, while I was reading Rimbaud on a blanket and holding the book up to block the sunlight, an old white guy who wanted to practice his English struck up a conversation with me while a young black woman massaged his Sudetenland! I noticed how far I’d come when it didn’t even slightly embarrass me and I even glanced down at her hand a few times.   But scopophilia is hard on the libido. I started dating.   I was told, by French people, that a cultural equivalent to American dating did not exist and that the word rendez-vous is used to describe meetings with the company’s sales staff or with say, the plumber, to fix les toilets, and it is also used to describe a meeting between oneself and the person with whom one does the horizontal shuffle! Funny huh? No.   Well, I’m not French. I’m American. And more, I’m Cajun! So when I passed the little café where the Frenchie with whom I had been sleeping for over a month was seated with a very fashion conscious female donning the essential high heels, her forefinger between his mais oui lips, I got a little crazy.   I can’t remember now what exactly I said or did, but it involved broken dishes.   His response, “Rachelle, ne paniques pas! Tranquille!”   “My name is Ray-chull!”   I needed precision!   She had the nerve to speak, “Mais, qu’est ce que ci passe Rachelle?”   She knew my name. I wondered why I didn’t know hers. I thought she must be a member of some kind of Simone de Beauvoir cult whose goal was to put me, an I-won’t-just-shut-up-and-stand-by-my-man woman, in my place.   “I lived in New York bitch!”   I said this strategically because Parisians give a lot more respect to New Yorkers than they do to us Cajuns and I needed her to, let’s say, understand me!   “Rachelle, calme-toi,” he said.   “You shut up,” I growled.   He may have said, “Oh la la,” but I don’t know, I couldn’t hear above her screeching voice.   “J’adore New York!”   She was standing next to me now, holding my forearm, her eyes wide, glimmering. I wanted to smack her pretty face.   I walked away, quietly, in my converse.   Back at my place, the tiny people living in my heart were depressed. They asked for chocolate. I gave it to them. I wrapped up in a sheet and put on my favorite sweatpants. I wrote pages of hate in freehand. I hate him. I hate him. I hate him a lot. I hate him. I hate him. I hate France. A lot. I hate love. I hate that bitch. I hate high heels. I hate her…   It went on like that until the chocolate kicked in and I jumped up and called my friend, a French artist and lesbian who paints naughty little fairies boinking one another with strap-ons and sunshine balls! The good lesbian invited me to a party. Just what the doctor ordered.   I showed up looking fine in red cowboy boots, blue jeans and a black cashmere turtleneck. My friend and her friends were wearing noisy high heels or threatening combat boots depending, of course, on their role.   I got drunk on some homemade liquor from the Ukraine.   Then suddenly, like the dream of some southern Californian flower child, the lovely hetero entered the room. The tiny people living in my heart lifted their heads then hula-hooped for almost an hour. I smiled. He smiled. I loved France again.   Later on, after too much of that liquor from the Ukraine, I stood on my head just to prove I could. One of the tiny people living in my heart puked. The lovely heterosexual asked where I was from. I told him I had just arrived in Paris…
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