Paris in April. What is it really like? I thought I'd share a section of The Phantom Lady of Paris with you.
A few weeks afterward, spring arrived in Paris. Skies sparkled like diamonds, and the fragrance of blossoms was everywhere. Trees on Boulevard Saint Michel transformed into impressionists‘ canvasses and in the Luxembourg Garden, flowers dazzled with violet and gold. When you sat on the terrace of a café in Saint Michel Plaza, breezes whispered past, cooling and refreshing. Spring had come. It came early, weeks after Bonnie left.
Latin Quarter inhabitants who hibernated through much of winter reappeared and once again strolled boulevards. All the cafés on Boulevard Saint Germain were now open (many closed during winter months). Once again their terraces bubbled with laughter and conversation. If one listened carefully, one heard the gurgle of wine filling goblets, the pop of champagne corks, and hiss of espresso machines spewing the aroma of fresh java, an aroma that brought back memories of Sunday mornings and good times at home. It was the music and fragrances of spring in Paris. Spring came early that year, mere weeks after Bonnie left.
On Sunday afternoons, couples, their toddlers in hand, strolled Boulevard Saint Michel. Cradling toy sailboats, youngsters frolicked into Luxembourg Garden and as parents looked on, the young dynamos of energy splashed through wading pools, squealing and laughing—orchestrating the resonance of youth and immortality. Spring had come.
Gypsies once again panhandled on street corners, their favorite, the intersection at Saint Germain and Saint Michel, where they stopped passersby, glibly spinning tales of hard times, and starving babies, and the imperative need for a few francs to buy milk and/or medicine for their emaciated, near-death children. Translation? ― We need money to buy wine. When Gypsies returned, there could be no doubt, spring had come.