Featured Post

That time I wanted to pass myself off as Joyce Carol Oates #TBT

Image
I submitted my first piece of writing when I was seventeen, a story about my first job, working at the employee cafeteria at General Telephone where my mother was a dispatcher. Rolling the 20# white bond backed by a sheet of thin blue carbon paper into my Smith Corona, I typed it out slowly, carefully, on a piece of erasable paper—and mailed it off to Cosmopolitan along with a cover letter. Not just to any editor at Cosmo, by the way, I sent it directly to Helen Gurley Brown. 

The piece itself, meant to be comical, was full of clumsy attempts at self-effacing humor.  I strived for a similar tone in the cover letter I addressed to Brown, completely clueless that the high powered editor in chief wasn’t the one reading unsolicited manuscripts. After I signed off I added the following PS. I could have said I was Joyce Carol Oates. What I thought that would accomplish I can’t imagine. That an unsatisfactory submission would get published because of a lame joke? 

No surprise, in the SASE I’d …

Dreaming of France: Notre Dame


When we were in Paris in early May—before the height of the season—my husband waited in the long line to see the inside of Notre Dame while I took pictures of a couple getting their wedding photos taken. 


It turned out the line looked longer than it was and after just a few minutes were able to go inside. It's no secret that Notre Dame is stunning and we both got our cameras out and started shooting before hunting down the passageway that led to the tower stairs. I'd climbed the tower stairs to the top on my last trip to Paris many many years earlier and while my husband isn't a huge fan of heights he agreed to do the climb with me. We went earlyish in the day so we weren't too wiped out from walking.


My recollection from the last time I'd been here—in 1989—was that there was a small arched entry near the back of the cathedral. We couldn't find it anywhere so we asked the woman manning the souvenir counter inside. What I didn't realize was that there was a whole different line—a really massive one—outside that led to stairway that climbed to the very top. We were told the wait was at least an hour. I don't remember it being that way back in 1989 but again, I'm reminded, it's not only me that's changed in 27 years. We decided to skip the climb this time around, it was cold and neither of us was keen to wait in an hour long line. Besides I'll always have this memory. You can't even get this close to the chimera now, the area is fenced off.




Comments

  1. It's always a different experience, yet still thrilling. Thanks for playing along with Dreaming of France.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Oh, I can't believe that you used to be able to hug the chimeras like that! Love the photo of you climbing the steps too. It took me 4 visits to Paris to manage to climb the steps of Notre Dame. The first visit I didn't really try, but I really did try the second and third times, that queue always beating me. But on the 4th trip, I made it a priority, we got there early one morning and I waited the wait, it's still worth it. I really meant to make a post about it for Paris in July, but I was overwhelmed with other stuff and didn't get ANY Paris in July things done sadly.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I know! Looking at it, I can't quite believe it either! So glad I have that under my belt, to show my grandkids when they come along. Here, look what your stuffy old grandma did!

      Delete

Post a Comment

Thanks for stopping by and sharing your comments. Insecure writer at work.

Popular Posts

Have Broom Will Travel [memoir]

10 Ways to Know You're a Brit at Heart

That time I wanted to pass myself off as Joyce Carol Oates #TBT

#11 BEACH MUSIC: A time of tans, blonds and hot pants

Marching for THEIR Lives in Santa Monica