Dream of: 31 December 1995 "Veuillez-Vous Allez"

Carolina and I were in the Fifth Street House (where I lived in Portsmouth in 1964), where Buckner was now living. Grierson (a fellow my age who used to live across the street from me on Fifth Street) came up to the back door and then walked on in. I shook Grierson's hand and introduced him to Carolina. Grierson (about 25 years old) appeared to be in good shape. I thought he now drove a cab. Obviously he had stayed in Portsmouth all these years. I thought Grierson had probably inherited his parents' home across the street. He wasn't doing badly, but clearly he had gone nowhere in life. I was happy to see him, but I felt curiosity more than anything; we had never been particularly close. Grierson only stayed a few minutes, then left.

I, meanwhile, was reflecting on my own situation. I knew a change was coming, and now as I looked about me, I knew clearly what it was: I wanted to move to Paris to live. I turned to Carolina and asked, "Veuillez-vous aller vivre avec moi a Paris?"

As I formulated the question, it seemed the way I was saying "veuillez" was rather peculiar. I could visualize the spelling of the word in my mind, and I wasn't quite certain the middle three letters "eui" were correct. Plus I had some difficulty pronouncing them. Nevertheless it all sounded all right when it came out, and Carolina clearly understood me. She seemed willing to go with me to Paris, although she seemed a little uncertain.

I myself had my doubts about taking off for Paris. I knew it was a risky venture to move to another city. However I also reflected I had never known anyone who had actually moved to a new city, and who with determination stayed there, who hadn't made it. The trick was in being determined to stay.

I did think about Rico. Rico was a German whom I had met back in 1978. He and I had both been arrested in Tabriz, Iran for smuggling cars into Iran, and I had ended up in jail for almost eight months. For some reason, Rico now reappeared in my mind as the type of fellow who might not make it if he were to move to a strange city.

But I knew I wasn't like Rico, and I decided Paris was the place for me. Even the gaudy Eiffel Tower meant something special to me.

I also thought about Weinstein. He also had grown up in Portsmouth, and he had moved to Manhattan, working as a writer and editor. When I moved to Paris, I would correspond with Weinstein in New York, and we would conduct a New York – Paris correspondence. Since he knew some French, I could even write to him in that language. I liked the idea of writing to Weinstein. He would be surprised to receive a letter from me with a Paris return address.

What I would do in Paris was still unclear. I would look for work. I was still armed with my law license, which surely would help me find a job in Paris.

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