I went looking for an apartment in Paris that would fit Jason Armitage’s lifestyle. Get ready to drool. 🙂
This first pic shows the massive skylight and two floors of luxury living:
I have no idea what 2.5 million EUR is in Australian dollars, but it seems a lot for a three bedroom apartment. Then again, it is in the most expensive part of Paris. Here are a few more pics to make you weep:
These last two shots are from a different apartment, but I had to include them in Jason’s dream apartment as they both have a view of the Eiffel tower in the distance:
When I was 21, I spent a semester studying French at the Sorbonne and living with a rather well-to-do family as their au pair. I remember that I had to get off at Trocadero metro station to get to the apartment. It wasn’t quite as beautiful as the one shown in the pics above, but it was big enough for a master bedroom, kids’ bedroom and a spare bedroom with ensuite for the live in nanny: me.
I enjoyed looking after Bruno and Eric, but I didn’t appreciate my huge good fortune in landing that job until just now. Room and board for a few hours of kid-sitting. I was even invited to go on holidays with them.
As an au pair, I wasn’t paid a wage, but I did receive ‘pocket money’. It was more than enough to cover my expenses to and from the Sorbonne, plus evenings at the local cafe, dining on Croque Monsieur et cafe au lait. In those days I could drink coffee all night and still sleep like a baby. 🙂
Thanks for joining me on this trip down memory lane. I can’t tell you how much I’m enjoying myself. Oh and my words finally passed the necessary daily count: 1782. I’m still behind, but writing is fun again so I’m pretty confident I’ll catch up.
Remember how I said that research invariably leads me to new writing ideas? Well, the Sainte Anne mental hospital must have got me thinking about earlier psychoanalysts because I created a character today who has a fascination with Freud. His name is Stephen Maher:
Back in his office, Stephen spent a few minutes polishing his spectacles before calling the AI. The spectacles had belonged to his grandfather and provided no optical enhancements whatsoever, but they did provide some much needed time out. They also made him look like a young Sigmund Freud, or so he’d been told.
Now, the weird thing is that I wrote that paragraph without any clear memory of whether Freud wore glasses or not. This is what I found:
Followed by this:
Both photos are of Sigmund Freud and come from the Freud Museum London.
I was tempted to draw spectacles on the younger image, to give myself a reference pic for ‘Stephen Maher’, but then I got cold feet. I’m more into Skinner than Freud, but defacing his portrait would have felt terribly disrespectful!
Anyway, thanks to Stephen Maher and Freud, my wordcount today is a much more respectable 1161. My imagination is still creaking from lack of use, but I can feel it loosening up, a little bit more each day. Life’s good. 🙂
I’ve been researching psychiatric conditions because the story of P7698 starts with two Innerscape Residents needing treatment. One of them is Keith Marsden, a minor but charming character who appeared in both ‘Miira’ and ‘Nabatea’.
Anyway, the Residents respond better to therapy when it occurs in a hospital setting so suddenly, I needed a mental hospital. As Keith Marsden lives in Paris, it seemed reasonable to start my search there. And boy did I hit pay dirt!
The link below leads to an article with lots of pictures of this amazing hospital, right in the heart of Paris. Not only is it an utterly beautiful place, it’s a good hospital too. If you read the history, you’ll realise that much of modern psychiatry originated at Sainte Anne:
For those who don’t want to read it all, here are some pictures. First up a map showing Paris:
By ThePromenader at English Wikipedia – Transferred from en.wikipedia to Commons., CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=1753317
The thick brown line denotes the original arrondissements of Paris. Within that shape, the area shaded in dark orange is the 14th arrondissement where Sainte Anne is located.
The next picture is of one of the old buildings. The campus is huge.
This pic gives you some idea of the gardens too. Back when there were no treatments for psychiatric conditions, patients were encouraged to work in the gardens – fresh air, sunshine, purpose, exercise. These days we’d call it occupational therapy.
Anyway, the setting is superb and gives me a great location to work with.
Nano took a back seat this morning as I’ve been searching for the ‘right’, writing music. I listened to new music by old favourites, but nothing really matched how I feel about this new story. So in desperation I went to SoundCloud and there, thanks to SoundClouds great recommendation engine, I found…
This is the playlist I just put together. It’s a bit rough as I just grabbed songs as I heard them, but the very first one – A World Asleep – is glorious and should give you some idea of the kind of music I need this year.
Jon Altino? If you’re reading this, I wanted to buy the album, but iTunes only offered Superhero. Please, please put a new album up there!
Well, time to put this lovely music to the test and fire up StoryBox. I have this feeling P7698 is going to flow a whole lot better today than yesterday.
And we’re off, in eastern Australia, at least. For those who worry that we get an unfair advantage, don’t forget that our Nano ends earlier too.
So what now? Well, I’ve started my 3rd nano by writing this blog post. Some might call that procrastination. I call it clearing the decks. -smirk- I’ll be obsessed with nano for the rest of November so it behooves me to explain, right? Right.
Anyway, this post is really just to say that I won’t be posting anything of world shattering importance in November, so apologies in advance. I will post little bits of research though, if they’re interesting, and the word count, of course. If anyone wants to look me up or become a writing buddy, you’ll find me on Nano as ‘Meeka Flory’. 🙂