I am not at the moment lost in Paris, nor was I lost when I was staying there. What I did lose in Paris was my Cannon SLR camera, which has been my constant travelling companion since I started blogging earlier this year.
Maddeningly I left it behind on a bus when I hopped off. Within a minute I realized, with a sinking heart, what I had done so I dashed back to the bus stop and caught the next bus going in the same direction. I explained my predicament in very faltering French to the kind and patient bus driver who made some phone calls and I was told the bus ahead of us would be checked for lost property when it reached the terminus. I stayed on the bus as it travelled on into parts of Paris I have never seen before, waiting for the call to come from the driver of the other bus and hoping against hope that I would be reunited with my camera. Sadly there was no fairy tale ending.
Although I was upset at the time I am now more philosophical about the loss. I am contemplating what I will replace the camera with the maybe the same again or perhaps something smaller that could be tucked safely into my handbag. The night before I lost the camera when I was putting together the last blog post I wrote ‘Bonjour de Paris’ I downloaded to my MacBook all the images that were on the camera’s memory card so thankfully I haven’t lost all the pictures I took in Paris.
On my way home as I headed to catch the bus to the airport I passed the Arc de Triomphe where the Unknown Soldier is buried. I saw many French flags fluttering in the breeze, military bands rehearsing and workmen beavering away preparing the site in advance of today’s Armistice Day memorial. Watching the scene put the loss of my camera in perspective. I remember today the very many, including thousands of my fellow countryman, who died in two world wars.