36. My host mother helped me dye my hair “noir ebone” in her bathroom today. Black dye was on the counter, my face, her sink, her bathtub, her towels. Nonetheless, she powered on and massaged my head with the goop with the expertise that only comes with years of experience in dying one’s own hair. I have never felt more like family here than I did when I was kneeling on the floor of her bathroom with her bent over me with the hand-held shower head blasting.
35. A solitary walk for three hours. No aims on a Saturday afternoon. Wandered into a cathedral, the chateau of an 18th century mistress, a Moroccan specialty store (bought candied chestnuts), and of course, Book in Bar. Spent an hour with my french book on Madame Pompadour in one hand and an old-school French-English pocket dictionary in the other. Only interrupted by French man wanting to learn Chinese. Had to disappoint him but managed to do so completely in French. My head is now clear of the muddy fog of yesterday and the previous week. The health of body and mind really shouldn’t be separated.