Tuesday, February 1, 2011


Today I got on the tram to go home from work. It was packed with all of the commuters, it was the end of the work day after all. Rush hour. Packed in like sardines. I was standing in the isle and an old woman was sitting near me with a poodle under the seat. A seat freed up across from her after a few stops. I sat down as there were no old people or people with children around that would need the seat before me. On a side note, people in france are very courteous of pregnant women, people with children and with old people. I always see people standing up immediately after seeing a person, as described above, entering the vessel asking them politely to sit down. I can't say I took much public transportation before moving to france, but I hope it occurs everywhere else this way.

So this lady with the poodle, she knows the tram is impacted and she notices the poodle's paw sticking out from under the seat. She tells him in french in and irritated tone to move his feet, for fear he'll get stepped on. This is very comical, I don't really know why. On another side note, I heard a child on the tramway on the way to work. Every time it paused at one of the stops, I would hear the cutest little voice sitting back to back with me say "├ža y est!?" (pronounced Sa yeh, an interjection meaning, "That's it!" and the child meaning "Is this where we're getting off?" The mother would tell the child "No not yet." Ok back to the woman with the poodle. So she begins talking to me, I guess I have a open heart ready to give and receive. I don't know, maybe she was bat-shit, one will never know. But it really brightened my day. To read more, click below.

I let her talk as I agreed with my eyes and a nod of my head. I was waiting for a good moment to interject as I didn't entirely understand what she was saying. And honestly, what am I supposed to say? I don't know the people or the dog. She told me the story of how she acquired the dog and from whom. Basically this dog used to live on a farm with a woman. She began by telling me that it was scared of everything and that it barked at everything. She said she felt bad, because it doesn't like going out on the balcony or to be alone. So she told me she brings it to yoga and to the market. I'm kindly nodding because I'm absolutely delighted that she struck up conversation with a stranger, me. She then continues on how she has acquired this dog. She says that this woman who was schizophrenic asked her to watch her dog for 10 days while she was away. After two months, this old woman figured the schizophrenic woman wasn't returning for the dog. So this dog wasn't her choice. I told her, "but the dog is a good friend, no?" She said yeah it a good friend but also a pain in the ass. The person sitting next to her laughed and agreed to the statement about dogs. I liked this fire cracker of a woman, she had pretty green eyes too.  My stop arrived, so I told her it was nice talking with her and that I had to get off here. Well, she brightened my day, I hope it brightened hers too.


  1. Awesome. I wish I lived in France. And on most public transport i've used in the US, people aren't as friendly or kind, they're usually just grumpy

  2. Well I'm impressed with the fact that the old green-eyed lady (old is 80's & 90's to me!) goes to yoga classes! She must be pretty spry. I love hearing these stories and was right there on the bus with you! Keep 'em coming. ;-)

  3. Love the story Kelly. "Bat-shit" my new favorite phrase. I'll start using it right away in everyday language.

  4. She was bat-shit.

    Any interaction with Kelly brightens someone's day :-)

  5. bat-shit is, as bat-shit does...

    Kristina, that is the nicest thing I've heard all day. Thank you.

  6. I forgot to mention, for the record, that people are courteous of injured and handi-capable people too. More people walk around on crutches here than I've ever seen in the states. Seems people twist their ankles quite often.