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Europe Up Close

Long Nights and Hot Days in Montmartre

June 28, 2013

I brought the guitar to Paris as a sort of insurance. If and when I ran out of funds I could always play on the street for money, I reasoned. When I initially moved into my eleventh story flat on Avenue Jean Jaures, my landlord?who was named Catherine, as so many women in France are?gave me a pitying look and told me that the guitar would almost certainly be stolen. When I ran into her on the train on my way to fly out of the Charles de Gaulle airport several months later, she was astounded to see that I was still lugging my guitar and its cumbersome, battered case which proclaimed that?if for no other reason besides the fact that I had not been robbed?my stay must have been a success.

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