It was raining outside and we had both run under the awning of the dance studio for shelter when the strange man suddenly began speaking to me in French. It was an assuming, confident French — none of this “pardon, mais parlez-vous francais, parce que . . .” but a “hi there, how are ya”, as if he knew me at first sight, as if we shared some secret and that secret was French.
He must think I am someone else. He turned to the wrong brunette. But it is raining and the cement is a glassy beige, and as the cars go by they sound like the tide coming in, and all around us neon signs announce furniture deals and bodies glide by on flowered umbrellas, and we are standing under an awning like trees on the side of a river. I respond to him and for a moment I could be anyone, we could be anywhere.