Hamburger ⇒ Münster ⇒ Hamm ⇒ Hagen ⇒ Dazendorf ⇒ Hollandaise ⇒ Brussels ⇒ Sprouts ⇒
As I passed through delicious sounding towns, I dozed on and off dreaming of bountiful buffets.
Bremen ⇒ Düsseldorf ⇒ Köln ⇒ Liège ⇒ Namur ⇒ Aulnoye ⇒ Tergnier ⇒ Paris

Since my Eurailpass would not let me into eastern Europe, I decided to revisit my previous excursions in more detail. So I headed for Paris along with hundereds of bikers completing the 62nd Tour de France The Tour de France is the only spectator sport I have ever enjoyed watching. Perhaps because there is no ball being chased, only balls being chastened. Or maybe it's just the mountain scenery in the background. and rushing home through the Arc de Triomphe. My re entrée into Paris, however, was not as triumphant as for those bikers, nor as joyful as for those German tribes who periodically parade through the town expressing their gratitude to Napoleon for uniting them as Charlemagne once united those ancient Viking tribes into Scandanavians.

In short, Kate T. would not let me return for a stayover, but I could visit she said. And so I did, briefly. I told her of my travails, and she, unimpressed, one-upped me with her recent adventure vacation in Israel, Without Hitler, there would be no Israel. Do you think Jews are grateful? Were the Vikings grateful to Charlemagne? Was George W. grateful to George William? It's just one long green string, isn't it? I am grateful enough to visit the Tour de France on TV from the comforts of my arm chair. most likely with all the comforts a kibbutz could offer. After enough of this and that, I wished her a good life and blathered some nonsense about getting together in the next.


Luckily, I had a plan B for sleeping arrangements. Cyrille, whose aunt I had visited in St. Tropez, also had a gay brother, Maxime, who lived in Montmarte with a companion. Cyrille When I met Cyrille, he was writing his dissertation in Economics at Vanderbilt. He often dropped by the home of Max and Henrietta on Convent Place while I was hanging around. As it came to be, I spent more time with his relatives than I did with him. When I told Henrietta that I stayed with his gay brother, Cyrille became angry at me because Henrietta thought it was funny that Cyrille had a gay brother. I didn't realize it was such a big deal, I told Cyrille. It's not a big deal in Paris, Cyrille explained. But it is a big deal in Nashville. He later moved to D.C. to work at the World Bank making loans to needy nations in Africa. Thanks, Cyrille, for your gracious family. told me to go visit his brother if I were ever in Paris. And so I did, and how glad I was. Maxime and his roomy were the kindest hosts a traveler could wish for. They fed me what was left of their dinner, and I bunked out in their apartment for the night — a roof again with no clackety-clack underneath me. Zzzz...

Famous Lefties

There was a time when my left-handedness would have been something I needed to hide, or I would have been marked with the sinister A wise man's heart is at his right hand; but a fool's heart at his left.
—Ecclesastes 10:2
sign of Satan. In some situations, that sign may have been cut off with an ax. Whack! That's why right-handers, as well as converted left-handers, came to be known as righteous. Today, there is still more of Them than there is of us. (10% is us.) Majority rules whatever the majority wants. If They want π=3, then π=3
— at least legally, if not actually.

And he made the molten sea of ten cubits from brim to brim,
round in compass, and the height thereof was five cubits;
and a line of thirty cubits did compass it round about.

—Kings I 7:23
Otherwise, the good people could also include the lefteous. So why did the majority stop whacking off left-handers' left hands? Baseball needs left-handed southpaw pitchers? Nahhh... Probably the same reason a few Vikings became Christian: there was more profit in it. After all, a leftless left-hander has more difficulty fondling the goodies, and is therefore less likely to buy. The not so cynical reason: empathy spreads with familiarity. Thems are human too. Well, maybe not that green guy.