I often see her in my neighborhood.
She has a nice face and sometimes I am able to smile or talk a little bit with her.
One day she told me that she used to live in a caravan on a terrain vague just outside of Paris until a group of young boys set fire onto her caravan. She was heartbroken, her cat had kittens and they were inside the caravan. There was a dog inside too. They all got burnt.
She didn’t want to live there anymore, she is thinking of living permanently on the street now. She makes about 6 euros a day. If she wants to take a shower she goes to the Gare du Nord, but she has to get out there as soon as she can, because she gets lost in places like that, she gets lost in her head and then everything goes wrong.
One day she was married to a Scotsman, for only one year of her life, but she says it is good she left, because she would have gotten lost in the Highlands. It is better she is not together anymore.
She says that she is happy and I want to believe her.
I feel clumsy, trying to stay quiet. I watch how the women around me at the big wooden table carefully eat their rice and delicate looking salad.
There is a reserved concentration in each movement that they make and that I am unable to copy. When I walk outside I am relieved to see a young couple burst out in an ecstatic laughter.
Tokyo city flower
Paris - Metro happiness
They are connected through a white electrical wire, a boy and a girl.
The wire is plugged into his left ear and into her right. He looks calm and happy. His fingers of his fine brown hands start to move to the rhythm of the music that he apparently is listening to. His body starts to move too. She is not moving and no emotion is visible on her body or face, just a calm energy. She brings her soft porcelain white hand towards her chin as if thinking. Her fingers curl like a blossoming flower around the white wire. I look at my own hands, red and full of lines and wrinkles. A smile appears on her face as she lets the sound enter her body too. I can hear no sound, but I can sense their happiness.