Thank you, Robin Katsaros, for photographing my talk at Shakespeare & Co. and for hosting me & Jean-Marc (left, Kristin Espinasse; center, Heather Hartley (poet & Shakespeare speakerine), and Jean-Marc).

librairie (lee-brare-ee) noun, feminine

    : bookstore, bookshop

Attention! Careful not to confuse "la library" with "la bibliothèque" (or "library")

A Day in a FRENCH Life... by Kristin Espinasse

If Shakespeare and Company, that historic bookshop on the Left Bank--the little librairie that sparkles, like star dust, in the midst of Notre Dame... yes, if  this "beatitudinal" bookstore  has a mission statement it surely is this:

Be not inhospitable to strangers, lest they be angels in disguise

For this is the message we feel and see as we loll about in the historic librairie. This wisdom is written on the walls and stamped on the hearts of the "hospitables"—those volunteer-employees who reside in the store of George Whitman and daughter Sylvia, with whom I am smitten.

But back to lolling about...  I have never lolled the narrow halls of Shakespeare's Parisian walls. But I have gone gawking and shaking in their midst. Perhaps it is the literary "librarians" or the clientèles-écrivains? For customers are sure to see, in this beloved bookshop nommé Shakespeare & Cie, writers of both prose and poetry.  And they might as well be rock stars to we would-bes.

...we would be writers, poets, or novelists...

Novelist... I've not yet realized all of the goals on my "Kinds of Writing I'd like to Know How to Do" list.

And so it is that walking into Shakespeare & Cie bookshop still takes my breath away with a whoosh and a heart rapidly beating. Once inside and walking within a sea of poetry, prose, and fiction—my faith flutters at the possibility that one day I might court so many words and, eventually, ask to marry them...

First comes love, then comes "marriage," then comes BOOKS in the golden carriage.

Books of fiction, poetry and mystery... But for the moment I remain a shy suitor, a femme-écrivain ever chasing after words that whisper "Catch me if you can!"

Postnote: I had the honor of speaking at Shakespeare & Company last Monday night. I will share the video with you on Friday! Meantime, don't miss these articles on my talk. Merci to Adrian and Sion for writing about the event!

Adrian Leed's "Telling Tales About Success"

Sion Dayson's Kristin Espinasse: Of Bribes & Wine


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Listen to my daughter, Jackie, pronounce today's word in the following phrase:

On achète les livres dans une librairie.
We buy books in a bookstore.

Next Meet-up! Jean-Marc (only)  will be in LOS ANGELES  next month and elsewhere in the States... meet him!



Cavallini birds

SmartFrench Audio CDs Intermediate/Advanced

French Demystified...simple enough for a beginner but challenging enough for a more advanced student.

Cavallini Carte Postale * Vintage Paris * set of 12 cards Keepsake tin:  Regular & Joyeux Noel

Hilary, with Sylvia Whitman, sold copies of my Words in a French Life.

Before my speech, Heather (left) and Jemma (right), of Shakespeare & Company bookshop, took me out for a drink.

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For more online reading: The Lost Gardens: A Story of Two Vineyards and a Sobriety