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1982 3 of 4



I wanted to write this page a week ago, when we had the conversation, so lot's gone since then.

1. THEIR relationship: summarized by HER counting the number of NIGHTS (53) anyone has stayed in their apartment, while Jimmy wants to count the number of MEALS they prepared, saying it must be over 100, while Helen says no, THAT number is 67, which I say can't be since she said that Greg stayed 10 days himself. She insists that 8 people only stayed 1 night; Jimmy insists that the 8 people stayed 8 nights, which Helen snorts at; I try to introduce the term "people-nights" and NEITHER of them can accept it.

Grandma, for numbers of months, where Mom was exhausted in 1 DAY!
Me and Jim Roark for a whole school year.
Baxter's two kids after he died, for maybe six months.
David, Anne's kid, and she stopped talking to Helen when she gave him BACK after a semester.

3. THEY INSIST that I have to take care of Paul, since I'm HIS uncle; THEY aren't going to have anything to do with him. Also, MOM has her OWN children, and though she DIDN'T want to take care of her (Grandma), she DID. I said "This is probably the worst way I can put it, but maybe you did her a DISSERVICE by taking care of her: she thinks she can get her own way ANY TIME, without even THANKING. Your report of her saying "This is my sister, she doesn't do a thing for me," in a hospital elevator to a stranger, was CLEARLY recognized as HER way of saying "Thank you." She needs TRAINING in taking care of HERSELF.

4. She wasn't the favorite in the family: Grandma liked Mom and Henry MUCH better than Helen and Edward; I said it was changed in MY family where Mom and RITA (the youngest) got along better than me (the oldest), as Mom was. I said SHE was raised differently, in a different family, and SHE had a different feeling about people: she has yet to UNDERSTAND what I tried to say when I said "I WAS RAISED by that crazy woman," meaning that I didn't, couldn't, didn't WANT to have the same feelings about her as SHE had about her OWN mother. She brought up that she really wanted to go to France, but Grandpa said no, and her friend got back on the LAST boat from Europe in 1939.

5. I told her the classic story of her saying I was crazy for telling the man on the plane to Russia to stop smoking, and she LITERALLY said Mom was crazy.

6. She talked of how they HAD NO MONEY when Jim and I were with them, and how they had to campaign when they had almost no money to eat with. I reported that "it was coming back to them" because they always lived AS IF they had unlimited funds, and now they in FACT have lots of money: they gave and they GOT.

7. THEY really sounded insane when they described their various campaign "contributions": speaking for Carter through Ohio, they helped him carry Ohio and thus, practically single handed, made him president. Jimmy walked to the door of Stevenson's room in Chicago and got admitted by a person he'd met briefly a few days ago, and politically thought he was someone and treated him as such, leading Jimmy to think he played some key role in THAT campaign.

8. He showed me "the book of honor" and "international book of intellectuals" and "businessmen in the northeast" and though they were PATENTLY vanity press objects---I doubt the LIBRARY would carry them, let alone ANYONE other than those described in the book---and I wisely refrained from saying ANYTHING against them.

9. He talked to the expense of us in California without even a MENTION of how we worked in the gardens for them, fixed things with him, and spent hours campaigning with them, but I felt it unwise to say ANYTHING about it.

10. Talking about my gayness, they said it was nothing to TELL anyone about, and I likened it to the Russia-China trip: you couldn't tell I took it by LOOKING at me, but I was DELIGHTED with it and wanted to SHARE IT with others. They didn't acknowledge that idea. They obviously didn't care for Mom's "Do you fuck him or does he fuck you?" though they took in the information, and she said "If Jim Roark writes to you, are you going to tell HIM?" and I assured her there was no reason to, and she was snippily relieved: he has no NEED to know and it would just EMBARRASS her. Jimmy added with a twinkle that he's not going to tell ANYONE HOW (not WHETHER) THEY have sex in bed. I talked about my history of it, going back to five years old, and Helen retorted with something she'd been storing up: "No, it was the LSD that scrambled your brains and MADE you that way," so I told her as briefly as I could about the LSD: the climax of father-through-son and re-meeting with Mom and Dad (though not about Dad's possible gayness, and she brought up "Uncle Enoch and Uncle Loddie were never married, and they lived together, and no one talked about THEM; older women school teachers would live together and no one would talk about THEM"; my talk of "gay LIBERATION" made no impression on them, nor did my description of talking to church and school groups from Mattachine), but she STILL said it "scrambled my brains," and I even gave her ammunition for that by saying it DID show me that "our religion wasn't the center of the world, there were OTHER ways of worshipping, and now the INSTITUTION had moved away from the PERSON WHO FOUNDED IT," which made no indent on them. Yet THEY were so valid in their point that the Library of Congress RETAINS "Negro" literature rather than BLACK literature because most of it comes from Africa where Negroes are still Negroes, and the Blacks in America think THEY are the center and only cause of the universe, so they want everything to be THEIR way, and they can't draw the parallel with their religion: of course not, they have the ONLY RIGHT ONE.

11. Toward the end they joked about packing Jimmy up and sending him with ME to live for a year, and I joked back that he should come right along. It seems clear in here they're investing in someone to take care of THEM when they get to their final days (she insisted she wouldn't give JIMMY'S mother a bath and clip her toenails; she'd do that for HER mother, but not for anyone ELSE'S mother---but then THEY have no children of their own, which was implicit in much of what we talked about, but I wouldn't have dreamed of bringing it up---she said she'd PROMISED herself that she'd say NONE of this, and responded not a work to my saying that I felt CLOSER to her for knowing this---she just kept repeating: "I wouldn't say this to ANYONE, I wouldn't tell ANYONE about this," and I refrained from asking, "Then how can anyone KNOW about it?" She kept talking about people not sending her thank you notes after they'd stayed with her, so I of course made a mental note to send HER one, sadly only on the day I got ANOTHER letter of articles from her.

12. She talked about how Anne wouldn't talk to her at ALL; how Henry would always joke "We were just about to come to see you," when they never did and probably never would. She talked about all the dozens of nieces and nephews they have among them, never once volunteering that I might be somewhat special.

13. We mentioned Mom and her arguments: not talking to this one or that one, but of course Helen would never take the blame for anything, just enumerating in detail how they drove Mom to Cleveland Clinic the day BEFORE because it was going to be stormy the next day, how Helen had to rush to a chair because of her painful arthritis and how Mom wouldn't understand her rushing around like that. She kept track of EVERYTHING, showing me lists in the back of a telephone personal directory EACH SMALL GIFT sent to each person: Lists of gifts and items to Paul, with a little check saying if they were acknowledged, and she even ASKED me if Rita told me she sent Paul some layette items, and I had to confess I didn't remember, so in her current letter to me she said she had to ASK Rita if Rita had received them. So she kept track of EVERYTHING, harboring everyone's "slight" of her, and I couldn't help but wonder how I stood in "indebtedness" for having had 2 dinners, 23 breakfasts, and two packed lunches in return for only ONE dinner for each of them at the Lighthouse. I kept THANKING her, but she would hardly acknowledge it, saying in her letter she was happy to show "the beauties" of Virginia Beach to me. I have to resist replying that I was happy to show her "the beauties" of my gayness.

14. She talked about Jimmy's double hernia operation, HER hernia operation, and how they (Jimmy, mainly) talked Mom out of getting a "hole drilled in the skull, that just leaves people vegetables" and I REALLY had to resist saying they were WRONG in that: they just filled Mom with unjustifiable FEAR, though in fact it DID work out that she WAS cured WITHOUT the operation, so I couldn't really even talk against their stupidity THERE.

15. They talked about "their day" of walking a mile on the beach, having sold their tricycles, Jimmy goes "to work" in town while she watches two hours of soaps from 2-4, how they eat lightly in the morning "unless they have guests" (how Jimmy once ate TOO much and THAT caused one of the hernia attacks), how they eat dinner at 4:30 or 5 because they want to watch the news and stock reports from 6-7, so why should they have a conflict over what they want to do. Jimmy repeatedly terms himself an investment analyst, saying it takes constant work to look after their investments, which I'm sure it does---but then he has to quote himself as a Kentucky Colonel, and even an Honorary Kentucky Admiral (not to mention having the "Arnett Apartments" in Salinas, from that duplex he owned) for the vanity books.

16. How many times did they chortle over their good luck in getting the fish from the boats free: "I wanted to pay for them," Jimmy said endlessly, and then would grin as they gave them to them, and how Helen was "so clever" to say they came off the very boat that Carter used when HE was here before. That was clearly a high point in our shared life; they had little else to talk about.

17. She DID tell me that Hugh Lynn Casey had died the day before I returned, so there is SOME contact with the outside world. They've never been to ARE.

18. Jimmy can get MEAN, saying that Helen wasn't at the car at the exit gate (I could hardly say I agreed that he didn't SAY that), saying "I should have just left you home, you shouldn't have come along." She said nothing to hurt back.

19. They talked about their endless drives back and forth, how David helped them in their four-trip move, how they had to come four times to make sure the rug (free, they repeated) was the right color ("It could have been RED," Helen said with a grimace), how they go back and forth with their financial duties; how Jimmy checked ONE addition and found $1000 error, so "Now he can check anything he wants to, that's just fine with me," laughs Helen caustically.

20. They talked details of taxation I had no concern about, harangued Mom for not paying something Medicare wouldn't pay, endlessly surmised the present worth of their apartment (they'd bought two here; had been thinking of buying an entire MOTEL down the avenue somewhere), and the value of their car.

21. In their endless discussion of detail, Jimmy would talk about how he didn't like short sleeved shirts because then his arms stuck to the chairs, so he'd wear long sleeved shirts. Helen made it clear she was dressing up (in a dress, I guess, rather than a housecoat) for ME, as a TREAT.

22. Helen would show me gifts from this and that person, wanting something from me?

23. The disposition of Grandma's goods came in for LARGE discussion: how Marion would sneak away with hair-disposal ivory toilet articles and anything else of real VALUE: how she said she wanted that three-corner hutch and then SOLD it. How Grandpa had given them the crystal lamp for their wedding, then wanted it back, then MARION wanted it and Helen insisted it was THEIRS. How Henry and Edward didn't care what they get, leaving it to Marion and Anne; and how disappointed she was that I wouldn't take things she offered me, thinking I should have SOMETHING. I barely resisted saying I wouldn't mind the crystal lamp after THEY died, but couldn't think how to say it then. Again the story of how Jimmy found her on the floor, how Henry rigged up an alarm so Grandma could call them even when they were eating or in bed.

24. She told me (had I heard?) about Dixie, how she had an operation for something that didn't work, and (no, shots) how she was paralyzed, dragging her hind feet around the apartment, and finally they had to put her to sleep. They even showed me photographs of Dixie, I think the ONLY ones they showed, other than the "Gallery" on the wall of their homes, schools, and meetings with Rosalyn Carter and Helen's retirement page in the Akron U. newspaper.

25. They never wanted to travel overseas (except her to France), assured me they'd never have a reason to visit me in Brooklyn Heights, even though they'd heard it was nice, and just traveled back and forth to Akron, where they kept the rents the same for all those years, even though they were losing money, and then they quarreled about whether they'd raised Grandma's rent by $5 or $10, and at which time they'd done it. Painful, semi-silent conflicts.

26. True to her wish not to be kissed, she held out her arthritic hand to shake goodbye, and I could barely bring myself to put my hand on her shoulder in gratitude.




1. NARUKAMI (Thunder God) (8:07-9:07) (Ebizo (Danjuro XII), Tamasaburo): Not very spectacular but for (behind curtain) transformation of monk into Thunder God. Tamasaburo lapses into coarseness interestingly, sorry no translation.

2. MIGAWARI-ZAZEN (Substitute for Meditation) (9:30-10:15) Kanzaburo, Tomijuro): saw with Kanzaburo and Shoroku 6/13/60 and remembered not a bit of it. The woman's part was funny but drunken Kanzaburo a real treat, tipsy doll!

3. SUMIDAGAWA (Sumida River) (10:40-11:30) (Utaemon, Kanzaburo): Masterpiece of moaning womanhood by total-woman, cracked voice, accordion-mouthed all-sorrow Utaemon, Kanzaburo just a side-board. Overlong and dreary, but STRIKING!


4. KUMAGAI JINYA (Kumagai's Camp) (8:05-9:15) (Kanzaburo, Tamasaburo): Too involved to follow the plot, no grand transformations, rather overlong, but still involving with head-in-box, elaborate posturings, Noh music.

5. KANJINCHO (Subscription List) (9:45-10:40) (Tomijuro, Fukusuke, Kankuro): Saw with Horoku and Kanzaburo 6-8-60, remembered one or two verbal phrases, but not really dramatic; didn't even FOLLOW the character Kankuro played, and when he eventually becomes Kanzaburo XVIII, I'll say "I saw him then," but have no real idea of what he did or what he looked like, except his father.

6. MASAKADO (Demon Princess) (11:10-11:45) (Utaemon, Ebizo): With her pulling out all the stops, I don't even look at him, and he's HANDSOME! Building falling down at end VERY slow, but her switch to bright pink striking. Quickest of them all, and she's too OLD to be bewitching, but theatrical? YES! Had to check at the library what I'd seen before, so can add the following:


7. CHUSHINGURA (47 Ronin) (6/13/60) (Kanzaburo, Shoroku, Utaemon): Don't remember.

8. KAGOTSURIBE (Courtesan) (6-8-60) (Kanzaburo, Utaemon): Lion's head??

9. MUSUME DOJOJI (Maiden at Dojo Temple) (Utaemon): Probably didn't like. (6-13-60)

10. TSUBOSAKA REIGENKI (Miracle at Tsubosaka Temple) (6-8-60) (Kanzaburo, Utaemon): Nada. Then I got out the "Grand" Kabuki program from 9-2-77 to add the last two:

11. KUROZUKA (Ennosuke, Monosuke): Dennis remembered the witch-woman in the grasses.

12. YOSHITSUNE SENBON ZAKURA---SHI NO KIRI (Fox) (Ennosuke, Monosuke): some vague recollection of him tumbling through floor turning man into fox, but not much.

13. BO-SHIBARI (Tied to a Pole): I KNOW I saw this somewhere (Japan?), but can't find it.



ANNIE is dark and dreary and HARDLY $40 million worth of spectacle, though SHE'S not bad.

BLADE RUNNER might be the best of the lot: stylish, eye-catching, detail-filled, though the plot certainly lacked a certain cohesion, acting adequate.

FIREFOX was disappointing because I was led to expect SKY-FIGHTING illusions, not many.

AUDREY ROSE was on TV, but during this 21-day period, dreadful death-scare scenes.

RICH KIDS was also on TV, smart-alecky, not memorable.

E.T. was disappointing for not being more spectacular, too, though it was cutesy (a little TOO heart-tugging, in places) and reasonably convincing.

SOME OF MY BEST FRIENDS ARE is a disaster of cliché-ridden gay-awful.

NIGHTHAWKS wasn't bad, so REAL that it was depressingly slow, but WELL-DONE.

SCANNERS was the sleeper of the lot: didn't expect to enjoy it, but the STORY was decent of the scanners trying to protect themselves, with some great effects (Dennis, did you even sigh with relief when a head DIDN'T explode?), and a gripping finale, though Dennis DIDN'T notice the hole-less head of the brother taken over by the younger when HIS body was incinerated.

ESCAPE FROM NEW YORK was grim and dark, Kirk Russell expressionless, too negative!

TRON was certainly good, but there was a certain plot-lack to it that seemed UNNECESSARY. You CAN add in explanatory material without losing the audience, and we WANT things to work connectedly; certainly unquestionably a breakthrough movie. (And Jeff Bridge's loin cloth was so anti-sexual as to be NOTICEABLY IRRITATING.)

HEALTH was interesting mainly for trioing Lauren Bacall, Carol Burnett, and Glenda Jackson, even with James Garner, but the stuff was silly and slow for too long.

THE THING was another rather sleeper: THE picture that I thought "Why am I watching this, why do I want to be frightened, why don't I just go home?" and certainly one of the GRISLIEST sets of special effects in AGES. Grand gory flick.

CAT PEOPLE wasn't as bad as I was led to believe, but it wasn't very good, even John Heard wasn't that sexy, though Bowie's music was effective---and why can they show cunts but draw the line at cocks? Nothing to see in cunts?

STAR TREK II was a DREADFUL sequel, so bad I began to think some of the special effects had been cut from it, but it WAS only 1 hour 53 minutes, and that's all there was, not quite as good as one of their better TV episodes, certainly not as human evolution-expanding as the first one.
THE SECRET OF NIMH has been postponed from July 23 to July 30, so that's come LATER!



First, it's a DANCE, not a BALLET company, but I'm still sorry they're not on point. The first performance starts stunningly with WAYFARER, with marvelously fluid, continuous, natural looking (and I forget the name of the Stuttgart choreographer who died)-like movements; Susan Lieber loves it too. NOVEMBER STEPS has music that I liked, but the movements are too limited and unathletic for me to like them, though I like their shirtless males, but in this first program of "group" dancing, there's little chance to identify who's who. SVADEBKA is just another boring "Les Noces," though there isn't QUITE so much angst and hair-tearing as there is in most productions, and later someone says this is AGAINST the libretto where they're TERRIFIED of each other: here they seem to love each other ANYWAY and look forward to their wedding bed. This anti-libretto jape is reinforced in the matinee's "HOUSE OF BERNARDA ALBA" where the mother's a MAN and shouts and tosses around the kids, to laughs from the audience; the girls look like they can have SOME fun among themselves, and there's a nice main-lighting director duet. Tables with booted feet, mother's shirtless dance with a crucifix, and people stomping off into the wings adds to the lightness of the piece. DREAM DANCES is all too short, with lovely bodies that I can begin to identify men with their names (as the awful $3 program does NOT facilitate with its god-awful facial portraits): Duato is the biggest, handsomest of all, Vadecasteele is so-so; Dadey is Robert Helpmann-like; Vincent is short and fey and VERY crotchy and leggy; Weiner is unattractive and Richard Rapp-like, Esquerre is short and VERY good and fast and dark and cute; McCullough is street-tough sexy, Tibbs is the strong mother; Matthews has a MARVELOUS chest under his graying hair; Eddy is lanky and attractive; someone is blond and attractive, others don't stand out much. SAY BYE-BYE is punk-loud violent-good, with great abrasions to eyes and ears, and their ENERGY is admirable, though choreographers know how to let them LIE there and rest while COUPLES knock themselves out. The night is the best: SYMPHONY OF PSALMS is Wayfarer-supple from 8:13-8:38; NOMADS from 8:58-9:20 is shirtless and athletic, neat boxing-trunk costumes for men sexy; and SINFONIETTA is the hit of the trip: brilliant, high leaping, sexy, 9:40-10:03 and it should have repeated the trumpets from the balconies to jetes all night long!

FRANCE TRIP, July 27 - August 8, 1982

TUESDAY, JULY 27, 1982. Onto A train at 5:50 and change at Jay for train to the plane---air conditioning MUCH better, and got a seat too for $4.25. To bus at 6:30 and to EMPTY non-luggage counter at 6:55, to get seat in SMOKING next to window seat---only CENTER seats in non-smoking! JUST get to gate 12 at 7:15 when flight is CALLED, so there's REALLY no waiting, except ON plane. Off at 9:10 pm, arrive at 9:35 am. "Loophole" not so good, but it passes time. Late takeoff due to long line. Monday night 4 hours sleep (3:30-7:30) and Tuesday none. Wash face at midnight. Same bumpiness at 5:20 am: dawn. Now to phone Paul. Onto Visa line (NOT Common Market but "other") at 9:45. GREAT! LONG visa wait till 10:05, then change $20 at 6.33F/$ for 126.60, and board bus (after going to Casse for a ticket, at 10:25, having phoned Paul who'd rented a CAR! I told him I bought a railpass because of HIM and we agree to meet at Gare de l'Est at 11:40 for the 11:55 to Colmar (HE'D phoned to go to Vaux le Vicomte and Autun and Vezelay!)). Driver says 40 minutes. Good, BUT, for 21F first class I get a BUS to Rungis, then a TRAIN to Point St. Michel, then a METRO to Gare de l'Est! Bus starts at 10:35 and makes SLOW rounds of airport. Bus gets to Rungis station at 10:45 and NEXT train announced for 10:48. Ah, if only it WORKS! Air is COOL. Get 6.6F/$1 later. Dinner at Fer Rouge was 210F for crème poirau, sole, and crepe*. Colmar lunch at Maison de tetes for 90F: terrine, Riesling chicken, tart**. Glass of wine for 8F. Tour 7/28 for 28F. Unterlinden entry 8F and 22F for the book. Breakfast 20F for continental. Hotel 65F each/night. Dinner at Rendez-Vous de Chasse 220F: pate, pepper steak, fruit and ice cream. GRATON DE PORC SECHE---awful Lyonnais baked chitlin's. Dinner at Ermitage de Corton for 200F: St. Aubin 1974 FABULOUS and Pernand-Vergelesses red. EXCELLENT bavarois de artichaut and TOMATO sauce; canetee a l'infusion de cassis, ending with ice cream and mure sauvage (blackberries).

WEDNESDAY, JULY 28. Meet Paul AT 11:40, train to Colmar. Good lunch and wine and service from sexy waiter. Check in at Hotel Majestic, I go to the tour office and get brochures and poster, we stroll park and streets and have a glass of wine under a building we find later is famous (Maison Pfister), and we cruise passing sexy jeans (though none as sexy as the Paris boys wore this morning!), and then to the Fer Rouge restaurant, in the tacky basement which Paul refuses to believe is "out of the way," and we wander town before falling into bed.

THURSDAY, JULY 29. Breakfast at the Auberge of the Rendezvous de Chasse, expensive but good hot chocolate, and then we're at the museum from 10:30 to 12, great Issenheim altarpiece, lunch at the Maison de Tetes, and onto bus at 2 for garbled tape and lovely tour through Ammerschwihr, Kayserberg, Sigolsheim, Riquewihr and Torture Tower, Ribeauville, and up to Haut-Koenigsbourg for huge lines and jammed tourist halls, but pleasant rainforest outside afterward, tour 2-7:30, sadly rather cloudy so that we can't see all the valley spread below the "plus grand et le plus imposant chateau du toute l'Alsace." We rest, dine at 8:50-10 at Rendezvous de Chasse, and Paul insists on a drink next door after we wander town and get lost by 11 pm.

FRIDAY, JULY 30. Paul has his coffee and we miss the 10:50 bus to Illhauzern, take a taxi at 11, wander the tiny town and have a wine in the inn until 12:30, when they DON'T have a cancellation (but at least we wandered around inside and ate one of their ripe plums), and we're across the Ile to La Truite, where Paul doesn't get the beautiful trout those at the next table are having, but the awful bone-filled friture (the "local" dish) and we chat with the three from Selestat, who drive us for photos at Bergheim of the walls and lime tree from 1250, and to their place where the 70-year-old (in his 30th year with the birthday-boy, the 85-year-old) takes us to all the churches and markets and the Humanist Library, then to their place for wine. He walks us to the train station, we get back and rest, and then to the Maison de Tetes for dinner and we wander the voyou-filled park. Bed.

SATURDAY, JULY 31. Paul wakes me in the night, nostrils filled with smoke, which at dawn we see pouring from the chimney right at our window. We get the 9:02 train after coffee in the station, getting to Besancon at 11:03, and right across to Dijon train from 11:10-12:00). To closed information booth, and I'd planned out a trail of one-star restaurants, but we got into the nearest, the Chapeau Rouge, for a great meal, and then to the castle of the dukes of Bourgogne and the Salle de Gardes, grand with the ivory pleurants from the Chartreuse de Champmol, and a few other altar pieces. Dash back to the 15:47 train (getting the bags we checked) for Beaune, and we carry both bags between us at 16:10 to the information booth, which refers us to the Hotel Central, which insists we eat two meals there for each of the two days we're staying. Then out to pay 20F for the Marche de Vin from 5-6, where I sample 34 wines, meticulously spitting, and depressed at the end that they won't put out any more of the sample bottles because everyone's getting very LOUD in the ancient chapel and not BUYING anything---Paul paying 5F for a silly tastevin. Then we're across to the Hotel de Ville for wandering through the caves under THERE, and when I get out I discover I've lost the map of Beaune onto which I'd transcribed the free sampling place AND the roster sheet on which I'd written my comments with ALL the names of the local wineries, and I run back THROUGH the caves and they're not there, and then remember we'd gone into the information office and I'd taken things out, and they have my roster sheet THERE. Paul calls us a taxi to the Ermitage de Corton, 4 km away, where he'd made reservations that prevented us from eating in the hotel this evening, one star, and we get seated in a barroom with two dykes, a beautiful female sommelier, and a kooky waitress who giggles her way through the evening. Lovely food (too much, in fact), and they charge us for a menu when we really had ala carte, but the MUSIC will never allow them to get above one star, even though the elegance of their BATHROOM (with flowers on the commode, yet) would seem to indicate they want as much as they can get---though the photographs of Dick and Pat Nixon is a point against them, too. Also, it takes from 10:55 to 11:35 to get the check! I'd said we wanted to walk back, and even though it's a bit late, we get out at 11:40 and get back at 12:35, after getting lost a few times, and we're both VERY tired to bed, me using the outside john. I have a somewhat restless night because I can't sleep SHARING A BED WITH PAUL.

SUNDAY, AUGUST 1. Up at 7:45 and wander town for a breakfast in the Brasserie and a GREAT two-person tour of Pommard, Meursault, Volnay, and Monthelie, rather sadly ending up in a "personal basement" for a taste of three not-very-special wines, from 9 to 10:40. Then to the Hotel de Dieu for a tour until 12, colorful roof, reconstructed hospital, and a grand Last Judgment. Back to the hotel to a GOOD lunch for 60F of terrine, chicken, puree of vegetable, and cheese to 1:30, and then out for a stroll around the ramparts where someone comes out and looks like he might be cruising, but I'm so damned SHY nothing happens. To the Museum des Beaux-Arts where a couple enter who want to see the Musee Marey where we see photos of birds and men and dogs and horses (taken with compressed air) in motion and a KODAK-LIKE film DISK with 12 exposures, like Kodak. Then to the museum at 2:40 to be HIT by a Hermes TRICEPHALE---VERY Krishna Trimurti-like, and then out at 3 past a STRANGE Venus: modern, Neolithic, and Greek all mixed together. To the Cathedral (Basilique-Collegiale Notre-Dame) for the 15th-century tapestries with an English commentator, and then buy a guide and see the Madonna and the cloister outside until 4 pm, while Paul takes a nap, and then remember just in time to save 5F at the Musee du Vin with the ticket from the Musee Marey. There I find the bread paniers at the Hotel Central and midget GRAPE-pickers baskets. By 4:45 I know so much my head swims and feet hurt: St. Vincent is the patron saint, doleurs cut wood for pressers and barrels, hooks for cutting, accounts, development of the presser, the bottle, and the glass; panniers and hoes and stake-pusher-downers (by chest, foot, hammer, hand), and lots of lectures and talks. I've had ENOUGH of wine! In the afternoon we're off to Chateau de la Rochepot, which is jammed, but it's pretty outside and kitchy and ticky-tacky inside, and our Australian partner understands little French. Around for pictures from hill and through more villages and the same, sadly, tasting, and back at 8 pm. Tasting places are now closed. Wash and nap ten minutes and dinner must be taken before 9 pm, and sadly we're in the kid-noisy backroom for 125F for "assiette aperitif" of hors d'oeuvres, terrine de legumes in a pink heavy "intersauce," but the entrecote with shallots is tough. Our Bourgogne "Renomme" is not the best for 35F, but the Pommard for 94F is good. Charlotte au Chocolate is light and tasty. 200F in all? Walk ramparts for no one from 10:45 - 11:30 and the door's still unlocked as I come in. Shit long over hunt magazines and bed at 12.

MONDAY, AUGUST 2. Up at 8:20 with dreams in head: earliest about a pretty woman wanting to tease and stripping to loincloth and gyrating while gently touching her erect nipples as "movie" slowly fades. Middle section of a tryout for a quiz program: I know I can answer most of the questions first if I'm #1 and DO get that place, but her FIRST laughing question is "What are your names," and BOTH of us answer "Robert" and she giggles and I say "Can me Bob," and she giggles and turns crazy and they lead her away. We hear that quiz programs may be banned and this'll be the last one. Then I'm jumping from bed to bed and throwing a blanket over two contestants and laughing and confusing matters. The LATEST dream I went through in some detail when I WOKE but remember NONE of it now. Paul washes a long time and has reserved a three-star lunch at Chagny at noon! I note that (he found there's an 11:45 train that gets us there at 11:53, which is fine) the train leaves Chagny for Chalon-sur Saone 16:20-16:29, and then to Cluny 16:45-18:15. Walk around town trying five or six local-brand cellars in the meantime, DRINKING some of it so that I have a slight buzz on when we get on the train. The restaurant is quite elegant, we're first in, by no means the cruddiest tourists, and the bread is DRY and HARD, but the cheese is a revelation: Charbertin is fabulous; St. Marcellin is not QUITE as good as Chambertin; chevre is goat VERY bien fait; Brillat-Savarin, sadly, rather mild and solid, said not to run; the local from Digon, Langres, is mild and VERY creamy. I get sole AND salmon along with pate for the first course, then a STRONG lemon sherbet with Marc de Bourgogne, then a fairly mediocre steak, but the "assortiment des desserts" is a smash: mousse au Pralinee, oeuf ala Neige, succes au Grand Marnier, a Gateau Citron, a bavaroise, a gateau chocolat, a St. Eve which is almond cake and praline intercreme, and then fraise, three sherbets, the first a MINT that's breathtaking, then mango too sweet, and cassis in the middle; then there are chocolates, sugared candies, and a pyramid of mignardises which I sample fully, and then the final arc-cake (tuile) is VERY large. We wander through town and then back to the train, where I record the following conversation: "Paul: Can cows swim? Me: Yes, MOST animals can. Paul: Cats? Me: Yes. Paul: Too bad! Me: Unless you tie rocks to their legs." One-star Hotel Bourgogne dinner is not so great: terrine relatively tasteless, though good texture; Navarin de lotte of GOOD BUTTERY sauce, nice fish, and ratatouille, "haricot de mer" and mousse of carrot and poireau, a tiny potato; but wines were merely OK: St. Veran better than Pouilly-Fuisse. Saint-Nectaire is smooth cheese and their goat with wine and marc de bourgogne is VERY zesty. My assortiment of cassis, WILD strawberries, BIG strawberries, and raspberries GREAT with the cream from Paul's vacherin. We'd gotten to the Pont de la Levee at 6:10 by bus after a pleasant drive through rolling countryside, leaving hikers off at tiny hill towns, but when we walked up to the Hotel du Commerce we were told there wasn't a room left in town! Leave our bags there and wander into the center of town, the Abbey closed, and when we exit the pissoir I suggest to Paul that we TRY the Bourgogne, and he said he had the same idea. I wait outside, sorry we're not staying, and they decide to give us a room being held until 6 for someone who didn't show, but we'd HAVE to eat dinner and breakfast there, all for 479F for their best room! They even sent a car for our bags when I say we left them at the more-distant Hotel Moderne Bonistat(?)! Fabulous! Have a luxurious bubble bath overlooking the abbey, and then after dinner there's a spectacular lightning storm from 10-11 pm and bed VERY pleased with the trip.

TUESDAY, AUGUST 3. Wake with DETAILED dream! Bruce Lieber is demonstrating how we can feed the body of someone we've just poisoned into a FURNACE so that we can get all their organizational money for ourselves (echoes of Cluny's history?). But when the TIME comes there's a GROUPING of people in the church (!) we're using and they don't LEAVE; then I can't find the FURNACE and I suspect there's no FUEL and Susan is starting to agree with me---that we really CAN'T kill someone just to get their money. VERY strange (and REAL). In Cluny I really begin to tire of Paul: his constant obscenity and repetition: "She's a cunt; elle est une vraie con! Yes, by God, she really is a dirty stinking cunt!" And then he asks questions of the sommelier about the cheese, from the bellboy about a charge on the bill for breakfast, and a taxi driver about the history of a castle. And then since I'M getting tired too, I'm not having the patience with him, though we DO agree on food (except for desserts) and restaurants and hotels and "convenience," though his CONSTANT reference to sex is a bit wearing. Yellow rigotte goat cheese is the mildest of them all, and a joy! Tonne de Savoie is dull but nice. The brie-like Colommiere IS brie-like. I'm not sure where this quote from the Hiely dessert list came from, but I write "Petites meringues---l'essence de l'experience spirituelle---petite bouchee de rien---pale, legere, sucre, evanouissant (vanishing)." For sherbet there is bland pistachio, bland mango, VERY good and "like" frais, quite sugared mint, and good praline that should have been a BLAST. The peach is normale, the pudding aux fraise is trop calme, the baba au rhum has not much rhum, the chocolate cake had DISINTEGRATED by the time I got into it, and the glace chantilly (MY name) is fabulous with remaining chocolate; there's a SOFT cake au citron, and a mille feuille! As for the START of today, we eat in the hotel until 9:40, take the first (10 am) tour through Cluny, the most enormous church until St. Peters was built, nice models of it around, until 11:30, and then I climb the Fromage Tower and enjoy the music and the view while Paul sits in the restaurant, where I join him at noon and we wait a long time for a mediocre lunch then go down to sit by the river pleasantly until the 1:35 bus to Macon, where we have two hours before the train to Lyon, so we look at the map and walk to the river and cross the bridge and go back across to the Vielle St. Thomas, or whatever, then sit outside and have drinks until just before the train leaves. I want to continue touring, but Paul wants more sex in Lyon, so we part there, he leaving me across from a student that I think myself into a deep depression about when we don't talk at all, though he seems like he might want to be friendly, nodding as he leaves the car before Avignon. It's still light when I get into Avignon at 9:10, and I'd copied hotels and restaurants from Paul's newer red guide, and though the city was FULL of tourists, I managed to GET a room at the Regina, right across from Hiely, a two-star on its "fermeture hebdomidere mardi," and down the street from Brunal, a one-star on its "fermeture annuelle jusq'au 23 aout!" Scamper for tickets for the 9:30 "Edward II," but it's REALLY sold out, and later Jean-Jacques told me that the Mnouchkine production was the toast of France, but I didn't feel quite ready for Shakespeare in French, even if it WAS done ala Kabuki! Look for a place to eat, and decide on a table RIGHT at the edge of the tourist madness in the Place d'Horlage, getting a ringside show when an 11 pm-starting troupe tried to drum up more customers with their Nazis and whips at 11:15 pm. To bed feeling just fine, after coming for the first time on the trip, very wetly, very nicely.

WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 4. Wake for a long-waited chocolate at breakfast just before 10, then a tour-avoiding prance through the Place of the Popes, in which the most spectacular sight, the frescos, have been said by Joe Easter to have been restored beyond all original scope. But the Dome au Rocher is very impressive, and I take lots of pictures. The Petite Palais has what I think to be good Italian primitives, but Joe says they're CLEANED beyond what they should be and ruined! Lovely bridge, seaport, buildings, and I get back to Hiely for lunch at 12:50, one of the best meals after an original dark-colored Kir for 18F, a lovely artichoke mousse with morels on one side and lobster on the other in a delicious cream sauce, and transcendent liver with the best sliced home fries in a buttery cheese that I've ever tasted. A half bottle of wine and the five plates of dessert send me out at 3:30, TOTALLY stoned, to station in haze of happiness, and the next train at 15:50 is to Narbonne, with connection to Carcassone! On in a delirium of joy that words struggle to convey: as the colors looked bright out the terrace of Hiely-Lucullus as I pulled aside the soft woolen curtains to look north toward the Place d'Horloge, with its restaurants, shows, and pedestrians. I sit on the train and BREATHE to push more energy through: this is happiness; more, it's JOY! I watch the strange pine-lined fields of daisies lining greenery and remember the FIELDS of tired black-faced sunflowers desultorily facing east as the sun set in the west yesterday, and the gibbous moon rose pink (pink rose?) and bulbous after the sunset. I'm here in the midst of novelty, and the second-class car plays strange drone-music that starts with a harp glissando that I think comes from a passing hum of wires. I'm NOT on a TGV, but we're from Avignon at 15:50 to Narbonne at 17:39 and I check on the cathedral to see before I leave at 18:36! Narbonne St. Just Cathedral treasury window #13 has a beautiful Carolingian Gospel cover in ivory from the XI century, and window 11 has a wedding casket of crystal. Back on the train for the continuation to Carcassone by 19:something, and out to remnants of sun to walk the shit-smelling pedestrian mall to the highway and the old city over the old bridge, and walk up the center to find entrance at the church, and wander around its old streets feeling more impressed with Rotenburg. Get a drink of a Grenadine Diablo (usually 5F) for 12F when she invents it for me, and wait for the tour of the castle at 9:15 while reading the book I bought for 25F, treasuring the 10 postcards of two aerial views of Carcassone for 8F, and the tour from 9:40 to 11:45 tells me more about structuring the restructuring of the walls than I really wanted to know, but the handsome face of my neighbor helps pass the time, even if he DOES have a fat rear and flanks. Walk back by 12:15, taking last pictures from the NEW bridge with a less treed-in view, have a ham sandwich and a beer, back to the station at 1 to JUST get my bag, wondering how I'm going to stay awake until 2 when the train to Nice comes, and they announce a train at 1 to Nice, so I'll be able to get more sleep too!

THURSDAY, AUGUST 5. Board, listen to black say she'll lock herself in the john if she doesn't get a couchette, and cute guy takes 63F and gives me a lower bunk. I can't SLEEP! Up at 6 in Toulon and out at 6:45 to wait and wait and pass Cannes and Juan les Pins and Cagnes and into Nice at 9:10, one hour late from SECOND (2:05 am) arrival at 8:05 am. Digne train is five blocks away, and after getting a map from the information at 9:27 I'm racing along the street and the guy in front puts down his bag. I swerve to the side, lose my footing on the curb, my bags swing around, unbalancing me more, and as I stretch for my footing so as not to fall, my shoulder-bag strap breaks and lurches forward. I bang my shoulder and heel of my thumb on the stanchion to stop myself (the thumb hurts for only 4-5 days, but the bruise is STILL on my right bicep as I type 8 days later). I check that my map and wallet and passport are safe from the FRONT of the bag, send the guy an angry "C'est a vous and votre baggage," in TOTAL hatred, and then stalk on, hurrying for the 9:35 departure, my camera probably lying in a black heap on the sidewalk, ignored in my ill will and haste. I berate myself for being so ANGRY, but board the train at 9:33, getting the LAST seat, and the car is VERY rocky, going up and down hills like a little roller coaster, but my seat is BACK-facing and there are tunnels, so the ride STARTS mediocrely. Through St. Martin du Var la Vesubie across the river from an ACROPOLIS of village. At 10:10 I START when a local clock reads 9:30, the time we left Nice. The Valley Where Time Stands Still? At top: Hydro La Var and La Tinee. Puget-Thermiere about 1/2 there. 48 seats, 24 standing; driver smokes in non-smoking section; place has empty seats and I move to sit forward on the aisle. VERY tired! Entrevaux has a wonder WALK to a hilly castle. Couscous and wine and cheese for a 40F lunch. Board bus that has a driver who SAYS he goes to Briancon, but get to a SNCF station at St. Auban (or Chateau Arnot) at 2:55 and woman says it's a TRAIN at 3. Well, OK. Coming out of Nice information office I rush down the sidewalk and someone in front of me puts his bag down (this is from notes, the other from head as I typed) quickly on the street. I veer around a tree close to the curb, see that I can't step OFF the curb because it's filled with water, and suddenly I'm off balance, lunging forward, my bags falling forward and pulling me MORE off-balance, and I frantically place my feet forward to stop myself from falling. Grab onto a pole, hurting the heel of my thumb, and check quickly to see that the Nice map I'd just put in the FRONT of the bag is still there. Holler "C'est a vous, votre baggage," to the guy who stares at me solicitously, and then feel AWFUL to have been so INTOLERANT of him, and to feel so tired from not having slept last night. THEN when I check to find my CAMERA missing (and no IDENTIFICATION in it, EITHER!) I see that it COULD have fallen out, and in my haste I didn't SEE it. Make all sorts of good resolutions and est-like avowals to FIND it, but when I have the guy call at 1 from Digne there's been no camera turned in to SNCF Nice, and he suggests I call the next day. JJ does and still no luck. SO I HAVE to start using the better camera. "Excuse the loss by thinking it ACTUALLY only cost about $50 and I've shot MORE than 50 rolls of film with it already (13 Mexico, 24 Russia-China, 6 Italy, 2 Atlanta, 3 Florida, 1 France = 49, oh; so 50th roll, about, was IN the camera), so I try to forget about it. Hills are nice, and little villages quaint, but it's not a trip I'd like to redo---WOULD my three hours be WORTH RETURNING to Nice for the camera? ONLY three trains out of Digne---to Nice, been; Marseilles, no; and Briancon, north. OK to Briancon at 2:20. Eat at Terminus Hotel: couscous and wine and cheese and appetizer for 40F. Back and catch the bus (under a HOT façade) to Chateau Arnot and there's ANOTHER wait till 3:25 for train to Briancon, an OLDER one. Hills and lakes are common viewing till the beautiful boats and sails and swimmers of Savine, and then tunnels and distant still-snowed slopes to Briancon at 6:20. Through the touristy town to try ALL the hotels and they're ALL full. Back to station in HALF-relief and HALF-fear (another sleepless night?) at 7:40 to buy water and two ham sandwiches, and phone JJ at 7:56 to find my arrival there tomorrow morning is OK, check 231F for wagon-lit as too much, and get another 63F couchette. Watch lake from 8-9:15, then to bed and sleep INSTANTLY, and wake only for a WINK between.

FRIDAY, AUGUST 6. Fellow taps me on the shoulder at 6:50 to say we're pulling into Paris! Feel VERY rested and get together JUST as we stop in the Gare de Lyon. Forge my own RATP ticket-dates and subway to Croulebarbe and HEAR the woman say the 20th floor and buzz for 10 minutes in hot hall before going up to 21 and finding JJ in and his BROTHER, below, luckily, is on vacation! I fill him in on history, he phones Nice for my camera, goes off to work at 8:40. I unpack, take a bath, phone George Borgetto, cash $100 for 669F from 10:30-11, and see George for ten minutes before subwaying to the Louvre. Pass jammed halls to learn of Copts and Etruscans (Copts influenced by INDIA, certainly) and eat 3-3:30 and see MORE rooms and paintings, some SINGLE ones better than any KNOWN painter's work. Out EXHAUSTED at 6 to Jean-Jacques' to look at books before he returns at 8:30 and we're out to La Vielle Metiers de France for good sweetbreads after mediocre terrine, and good fruit, GOOD Bordeaux wine, but 510F is a BIT high, though I INSIST on paying, blackmailing him into treating me TOMORROW night. Brush teeth and get to bed at 12:15, and to sleep AT ONCE, gratefully.

SATURDAY, AUGUST 7. Wake at 7:15 and lay a bit before pissing and shitting at 8. Jean-Jacques told me about the radio's playing Toscanini's REHEARSAL tapes of "La Traviata" with him singing ALL the roles, better than the actual SINGERS, and I dream that Art Bauman has a videotape of some REHEARSALS of a dance piece that's been televised. I look for ONE room and find someone dancing in it, another room is too small, and another looks OK but students start coming in for a class, taking red-hulled peanuts out of a huge barrel to eat as "the thing to do," and I "remember" that another "group" ate peanuts as "the thing to do," and the thought passed through my dream-mind, "How clever; this way they build up protection against the radiation of a nuclear attack, so all the "good" people will have built up their radiation immunity." Wake thinking it a very strange dream. Up at 9:15 for toast and juice and peach for breakfast and JJ goes shopping at 10:30 after phone calls and I look through his books on Surrealism and Movie Palaces and MGM films and get a call from Chantalle. Out to Mouffetard Market at 11:40 to 12:25, catching up to date on this. Drive out toward Orly looking for a place to have lunch and one place is closed, and we find Hostelleria d'Occitantie for GOOD lamb and GREAT profiterolles with FABULOUS warm chocolate, lunch 2-3:15. Gray clouds lift by Le Luat and he starts filling the pool and I wander grounds and help him dissolve chlorine tablets and visit rooms and we leave for Loing-sur-Orge for a drink (he with bright green Menthe Vichy, me with crimson Grenadine Diablo) and look at the lighting for the 40F and 60F Spectacle d'Ete, going since 1968, and he's not seen it YET. Back to house at 7 and to Paris via Fontainebleau at 8:35, quick refresher and out to a parking place RIGHT in front of Ambassade d'Auvergne for a FILLING cabbage soup and ham with navets (white carrots) and cider, and he has HUGE chou farci, stuffed cabbage. Good fruit dessert for 300F, so I feel a good exchange with my 500F meal to HIM. Wander piss-smelling hippie-sleeping Place d'Horloge at 12 and back to sleep at 1 am, FULL.

SUNDAY, AUGUST 8. Wake at 7:15 to shit and up at 9:15 to shit AGAIN and bathe and find flight takeoff delayed till 2 pm. Gray day. He drives me to Orly 10:30 to 10:55 and I move from area 3 to area 2 as they announce at 10:59 that there are 35 Air France passengers, delayed two hours, on the same flight. LONG check-in lines and I finish this by 11:10, hardly moved forward at 11. Start reading "Rites of Passage." Check in at 11:25, seat 15K, right window before wing, with French guy with MOST BEAUTIFUL blue eyes that linger JUST a second longer than straight? Hunt for post office till 11:45, buy stamps and finish cards (10) by 12:30. Buy THREE scarves for Helen, Rita, and Mom for 84F the three, then left with 239F, and I buy Grand Marnier and champagne for 233F, left with 4 coins: 5F, 1F, F, 20c, or 6.7F, JUST $1 as souvenir return money! By 1 pm! Waiting area is JAMMED at 1:10, and I'm counting only NINE hours to go! Off at 2:30, announced for 7 hours and 39 minutes. Cloudy over France, no good view of Paris, then the French coast, southern England, and southern Ireland and lots of little islands. "Evil Under the Sun" is the film from 6-8 after chicken dinner, and next to GREAT-eyed fellow and wife from Brewster and a DOLL stands next to john and is BEAUTIFUL. Spots of Nova Scotia and then Cape Cod clear at 3:30 pm NYC time. Zigzag over Long Island and land at 4:15, really 7 hours and 45 minutes, taxi to 4:25, and NO passport check, and into luggage line at 4:30, catching up with this. Pissed TWICE on trip and gotta go AGAIN. Really TENSE flight, almost getting WORSE, not better. But happy to be home and not TERRIBLY tired, considering it's 10:40 pm. Out with NO extra for the two liters of bottles, and onto bus and wait for train at 5 pm. Home by 6 to phone Dennis and others, hoping to catch up with THIS trip soon enough to handle the 8 indexes that I have lined up for myself on the FIRST day back. I left with $1112.99 and came back with $583.71, which is great, having spent only $529.28 + token, BUT I paid $220 for the rail pass, $529 for the airfare, and about $214 on my CARD, so that means I spent about $1494 for 13 days, or $114.92/DAY, which, while not the $150/day of the Russia-China-Pacific trip, is a bit too much to spend on a regular basis. But I did get the roll of slides and there are good shots of Colmar, Beaune, and Cluny, anyway, and GREAT memories of Avignon, Carcassone, and Paris. Except for the loss of the camera, and the anguished anticipation of the flight going over (coming back much easier, except for the flight itself), the trip went well; adds well to my list of places been, and fills in the time before the as-usual-anticipated NEXT trip: to Tahiti and New Zealand and Australia with Avi in December and January, which will cost quite a bit more than this did, which means I have to save UP quite a bit before then! Surprised that it took me over a week to catch up with this tiny journal, stretched more in the typing than in the recording of it, and now to make the day-log for mailing, which will be on page 15, more than one page per day, back to "average" after the Florida trip taking one page LESS, even with the mailing-page, than the number of days traveled. But it's definite that I'm slowing down in my energies, which is sad, and also means I've got to get snapping on Antarctica and Africa, too!


TUE, JUL. 27: Air Florida flight off at 9:10 pm after a 40-minute wait for the twenty planes ahead of it to take off. Easy flight after initial bumpiness.

WED, JUL. 28: "Loophole" the awful movie after dinner and before breakfast, and we land at 9:35 am in a cloudy gray Paris-Orly airport. Use part of my "France Vacances" $220 first-class railroad ticket to get into the city and meet Paul McLean at the Gare de l'Est at 11:40. Delicious lunch on the very comfortable train to Mulhouse, then an older train to Colmar in the heart of the Alsace wine district. With 6.6 francs to the dollar, a hotel at 110F for the two of us is a real bargain. Wander the charming town, sampling wine, and dinner at the Michelin one-star restaurant Fer Rouge for 210F: crème poireau (a leek-like soup), sole, and a rather ordinary crepe.

THU, JUL. 29: Morning at Unterlinden Museum, featuring Grunewald's Issenheim altarpiece, great lunch at the Maison des Tetes, and a bus tour through such formerly-German, now-French towns as Ammerschwihr, Kayserberg, Sigolsheim, Riquewihr, and Ribeauville, followed by the Haut-Koenigsbourg castle which was reconstructed (mainly for tourists) at the beginning of the 20th century. Dinner at the Rendezvous de Chasse, another one-star restaurant, for a good meal, though we don't care for the tidbit of graton de porc seche, which is Lyonnaise baked chitlin's! With each meal we order a half bottle of white wine with appetizer and a half bottle of red wine with main course.

FIR, JUL. 30: We taxi to Illhaeusern hoping for a cancellation at the three-star Auberge de l'Ill, but we have no luck. Eating across the Ill River at La Truite, on their bony fish friture, we strike up a conversation with three people at the table next to us, who drive us to Bergheim for old city walls and to Selestat, where they give us a quick tour of their home town. Return to Colmar by train and to the Maison des Tetes for dinner.

SAT, JUL. 31: Train to Dijon for the one-star Chapeau Rouge for a great lunch, then to the castle of the Dukes of Bourgogne for beautifully carved tombs in what is now an enormous museum. Train south to Beaune in the heart of the Burgundy wine region, to take one of the last available rooms in the Hotel Central. Pay 20F for entry into the Wine Market and manage to have a taste of 34 wines. I spit; Paul doesn't and is reeling. Taxi to the one-star Ermitage de Corton: the most elegant restaurant of the trip; they're trying for three stars but will have to cancel their taped music and their giggly waitresses. Duck infused with cassis is TOO intense a taste, something I thought I'd never say. We walk back to the hotel; town deserted after 12 pm.

SUN, AUG. 1: Car tour through Pommard, Meursault, Volnay, and Monthelie; a tour of the Hospice de Beaune; good lunch at the hotel (required); a couple of museums and the cathedral; a tour to the Chateau de la Rochepot; dinner at the hotel with a very good half bottle of Pommard for 94F; half NYC price.

MON, AUG. 2: I spend the morning with six house-brand wine tastings, and Paul has made reservations at the three-star Lameloise in Chagny: sole and terrine and salmon as three appetizers, sherbet with brandy to "clear the palate," a fairly mediocre cut of beef, and a smash assortment of desserts: praline mousse, Oeuf ala Neige, Success au Grand Marnier, Gateau Citron, a Bavaroise, a chocolate cake, a St. Eve, berries, and three sherbets: a dynamite brisk MINT, a sweet mango, a tangy cassis. Plus chocolates, sugared fruits, and little cakes served up on a silver platter. Surely worth the 250F! Find a room in the one-star hotel in Cluny by sheer luck; dinner in the hotel.

TUE, AUG. 3: Tour Cluny, lunch, bus to Macon, train to Lyon, where Paul stays; and I continue south to Avignon, jammed with tourists, and dine in main Place.

WED, AUG. 4: Tour the Castle of the Popes and the Italian paintings in the Petit Palais, and have the best meal of the trip at the two-star Hiely-Lucullus: artichoke mousse with morels and lobster, transcendent veal liver and the best "home fries" I've ever eaten, followed by FIVE plates holding tiny morsels of FIFTEEN desserts. I cried with pleasure on the train to Carcassone. Tour that magical walled town until 1 am, then board a train for Nice.

THU, AUG. 5: Can't sleep on train! Lose my camera! Little hill-climbing train to Digne, train to Briancon---NO room to be had, so I board night train to Paris.

FRI, AUG. 6: To Jean-Jacques' at 8 am, all day at Louvre, dinner at La Vielle Metiers.

SAT, AUG. 7: To Jean-Jacques' family's country house, dinner at Ambassade d'Auvergne.

SUN, AUG. 8: Return to NYC 2:30 pm Paris time to 4:15 pm NYC time.



Look at my bookshelf at Crichton's "Eaters of the Dead" and thumb through to find that SOME memories are left when I LOOK at the book, but I couldn't remember ANYTHING of reading the book when I looked only at the title. Then in "Masters of the Far East" I read that past lessons must be left behind, or one would be crushed with their weight if one kept them all while ascending the stairway of life. So I HAVE traveled and read and absorbed entertainment in the past, but I don't NEED to carry EVERYTHING of them with me (so I can begin to sympathize with those of perfect recall who say they feel it a burden rather than a liberation), and I even can begin to think of Actualism, and gym going, and travel, as things from the past which were good FOR THE PAST, but which don't have to be carried into the future with me. Just as the MEALS which I've eaten have TRULY sustained me at the time, yet have also TRULY passed through my system completely and are TOTALLY gone now. Yet not TOTALLY, in that I still have a body, and ions of iron which I received some years past, still incorporated, so remains of people and memories and travel and books and entertainments still remain with me, brought to the surface at appropriate times: an incredible "Dying Swan" by Plisetskaya when I'm thinking of ballet, or Vickers and soprano bringing a moment of "Eugene Onegin" to life on the stage of the Met, or the lovely tear-filled afternoon aboard the train between Avignon and Carcassone. The image that I so often use of sitting at a seacoast watching the sun rise and set when I'm 105 comes fully to mind in "Masters of the Far East" (MFE), so that I can see myself producing my own food and shelter REMOVED from man except for companionship, at that time. But it RENEWS the urge to "call myself Christ" and "make it become true," as they say Jesus did. What a terrible effrontery, and what terrible practicality---if I've come to the idea that you can create your own FUTURE (after) life, why NOT your own future (THIS) life? And the books and cleanings and movies and diaries all crowd down with computerization of indexes and writing, and I feel that I can encompass all this in ACTUALITY, so that encompassing it IN MIND should be even easier than HAVING BEEN ALREADY THE PRODUCT OF MY ENTIRE PAST.



At 5:15 Claude's is the first I phone when Dennis is back from his doctor and says he'd just as soon eat out. They have seats, and I tell Dennis, "It's obviously a HORRIBLE season." Later we walk down to Dodin-Bouffant and get told it closed a month ago, and on Saturday Dennis reads an article in the Brooklyn Paper that Les Joies, Le Petit Pinguin, AND Lion D'Or have all closed, leaving Lisanne as the only nearby French restaurant! I dress in my light blue vested suit, even shining my shoes, and Dennis is in his two-tone white/yellow corduroy with a yellow shirt and at LEAST a brown tie rather than his eye-breaking orange and yellow and red and white. We get there at 6:55 to fill the third table: four dating people in the corner, loud; and a quieter couple at a table beyond the door. He explains the $60 Menu de Degustation of mussels, fish, veal chops, and a special dessert, so we head for the $45 prix fixe meals. Dennis wants the snails, but he's told he can have the Menu mussels, so he does, though he doesn't like them. They are plump and very tender, yet the VERY tasty Pernod sauce hasn't soaked into them, so their cleanness and plumpness is their sole quality, but when I take bread to the sauce, it's a RIOT of delicious taste, so we soak ALL that up with TWO rolls each. The attendant replaces Dennis's first one without asking, but for some reason he ASKS me if I want a second one. The butter is in a chick form in a dish, semi-soft but not hard enough for Dennis to complain. It isn't replaced when we're finished with it. Dennis orders a kir (which I just remember they don't charge us for!), and the waiter talks him into a Kir Royale with champagne, which comes in a beautiful glass in a MEDIUM (not as light as some, not as dark as Burgundy) color, but it's NOT very fizzy and NOT very tasty, quite bland. I order nothing and the head waiter suggests Perrier and I refuse. My appetizer is dynamite to look at: a ring of Navarin de Saummoneau holding nuggets of lobster in a gentle sauce, on a thinnest-possible bed of red, outlined with thin slices of the TINIEST artichokes. A LOVELY picture, but the TASTE of the salmon is quite bland, not at all intense. Dennis's sauce captures round one, but we're not being impressed, except by the décor, which is knockout reflection to every side and overhead in the silver-mirrored entranceway, and elegantly burgundy-mirrored inside with simple clean lines and lots of space between tables; though the entry room remains empty, while our room fills to two empty tables left by 10 pm. His "epigramme de veau and riz de veau" which I wanted, is VERY small, no particular joy of taste, either, though it's tender and the sweetbreads are breaded in what I think is egg, but Dennis says no. He accuses it again and again of being too small. My Tournedos Rossini is SOMEWHAT bigger, but still rather small, maybe 7 ounces compared to his 5 ounces in all. The paté isn't very interesting, and there's no sauce to speak of, so we're not happy for the price. I order a Riesling, seeing only the California for $16, they find a Hugel from Ricquewihr for $31 which is tasty but not punchy. I can't find two half bottles of ANY interest to give half-and-half, as I'd wanted. His Framboise gateau LOOKS dynamite, matching the restaurant's colors in pale, intense, burgundy-color, with touches of white to set it all off, but the taste isn't intense enough. MY dessert, fresh fruit in a framboise sauce, is a triumph: 4 small slices of THE BEST (must be sugared) orange, each with a raspberry; 4 wedges of the tastiest possible pineapple with NO toughness about ANY morsel, a sugared strawberry in the center that's a masterpiece, and four lunes of perfectly fresh kiwi fruit on the outskirts. The only masterpiece of the meal. Tax and tip make $151, Visaed.