Immediately I noticed his dimples when he smiled and I have to admit, dimples are one of my weaknesses. I absolutely love dimples on a handsome man. I had to look up, he was so tall. I’m only five foot four inches, this guy had to be over a foot taller than me. I couldn’t help but smile back, and I’m sure I blushed a little. I know I looked like a drowned dog, wet with rain, my hoodie soaked, my hair sticking to my face because of the wind, camera around my neck. I must have been a sight. But here he was this man, this handsome, cute, adorable, man, asking me if I wanted to see the best part of Notre Dame? Wait a minute, is this a scam? “Well, you know, I don’t usually talk to strangers. And I’m ok. I really don’t want to stand in that long line to get into the cathedral.”, I said. He smiled. “I understand, don’t worry, I’m ok, really, I work for the museums, I am a curator of one of the museums here in Paris, look.” And he showed me his employee ID. (Like I can read French, really.) But it did look like an official employee id and I did see his name, Frédérico Lucasa, and the name of his museum, the Musée d’Orsay.
I decided I’d take the risk, besides, it’s daylight, there are lots of people around and he’s just so good-looking. Okay, what can I say, I was also very flattered and curious. I was in Paris and a handsome man wants to show me around. What would you do?
He takes me to the back side of Notre Dame, the gardens. Yes, it is beautiful and you can see the architecture of the building so much clearer. We walk the gardens and he tells me about his work at the museum, I’m listening to the melodic timber of his voice more than I am his words as I stop occasionally and snap photos of the cathedral. The rain starts to pick up. “Let’s get a cappuccino and get out of this rain before you get soaked.”, He says and leads me across the street to a small café where we go inside and are seated at a small table in the corner. It’s so much warmer here and the cappuccino is warm and rich on my tongue, I find myself wanting other things warm and rich on my tongue, and I just met this man. Such a brazen hussy. I smile, as I control my thoughts and continue the conversation with him. He asks how I like Paris, how long I’m staying, you know all the fair weather, polite talk people do to get to know each other while he reaches for my free hand and covers it with his. His hand is so large and warm.
- Feature Photo: Notre Dame Gardens, Paris, France. April 2016. Photography by Candace Stauber