Hitting rock bottom

Posted by Claudia Moser on 8:40 AM in , ,
Micaela was admiring the explosion of colors which seemed to invade the streets in every tiny corner. Autumn was such a splendid season in Paris, and she noticed that the women have adapted the new fashion trends, lots of orange, plum, curry, petrol. She was pleased, French women do have a wonderful taste and their clothes reflected that. She admired some pashmina in a little corner across the Centre Pompidu and selected one which matched her violet eyes, noticed also by the shop keeper. He kept on telling her how much she looked like Elisabeth Taylor. She had heard that so many times before, she did not see it like that, she was too tall, too pushy, too bossy, but she had too, as editor of one of the major fashion magazines in Norway. But her complexion, her eyes and hair matched Taylor's description.

She wanted to pay, but suddenly a cold panic encompassed her heart. Where was her purse? She looked if she maybe packed it in her new laptop bag she purchased some streets before, but no, only her umbrella sat waiting.

She went out of the shop and start thinking and then realised she gave it to Massimo, her partner. She was in the shop, and handed him over while taking her jacket since outside started to be chilly. And yes, he did not returned it. She must find him, he wanted to see the new Gerhard Richter exhibition, so she will locate him.

At the entrance she realised she has no phone, no money, no option. So she thought maybe someone will help her. She was noticed by the young lady who was giving a helping hand at the information desk, so she approached her with the smile. She was petite, friendly and so French. Her accent in English was so charming. And she understood the problem, proposed that Micaela will go with her via the employees' door and after finding Massimo she will pay the ticket.

The Gerhard Richter exhibition was impressive, his photo paintings were breathtaking. She searched for Massimo together with Pauline, who was so understanding. No sight of him, in none of the rooms. So, Paulina suggested that maybe he took a break at the coffee located on the same floor.

Micaela and Pauline hurried towards the coffee, Micaela with the hope of finding him soon since she wanted to show Pauline that she did not invent a stupid story to get into the Centre Pompidu for free.

And there he was, at a table overseeing Paris with one young attractive woman, completely entangled into deep discussion. She knew his body language, he knew what he wanted. And her heart froze. She went towards him like a robot, managed to even put a smile on her face, saw his surprise, but he handed over her purse without any protest, just said she gave it to him, and he took care of it. And then she left with Pauline following her. Paid the ticket while tears started to fall down her face, she did not even notice them, she never thought she had tears left. While she departed the museum, Pauline went with her and guided her to a terasse just around the corner.

While sipping the black coffee, Micaela felt better and starting talking just out of the blue, because she knew she will most likely never see Pauline again in her life.

Micaela was an workaholic and her magazine was her life, nevertheless she had an amazing husband by her site, the conductor of the Oslo Philharmonics, an incredible talented man, who made her life so rich. But one day, three years ago he dissapeared from her life, a heart attack, so sudden, such a big void left behind. And Micaela found refuge in her work, and reinvented the definition of being a workaholic, visiting all the fashion shows in the world, finding new trends, new designers. And Massimo was always there, with his Italian charm, trying to defuse conflicts which Micaela sometimes generated with her attitude. Perfect working partnership. Until today, when she saw him with another woman, being a romantic. It hit her that she fell in love again, that deep down she found her feelings again, and that hoped that he will feel the same. But he noticed her only as his partner, maybe a bit like his friend, since during the last ten years they knew each other he confided in her, also when he was going through break ups or discovering his new love. And there she was hitting rock bottom, realising that she ended up in a situation she could not solve, the second one after the loss of her beloved Jan. Helpless, she shed another tear, thanked Pauline and dissapeared on the colorful Parisian streets.

Picture from here



Very nicely done - drew me in immediately. Thank you for sharing.

So much history and emotion packed into such a small space; and so beautifully done!

@Luan - thank you
@Humor after 50 - I truly appreciate your comment, I am no real writer, but love short stories!
@Jacqueline - thanks :)

I enjoyed this little story very much Claudia. So much packed into it from the very beginning. I felt sad for poor Micaela! I like to think that Massimo, in time, found out that he loved her after all and that made Micaela happy again!!

Anonymous says:

So close, and yet...

wow..another side to Claudia..the AUTHOR!! love this

Beautiful story, so heartbreaking and real - great job.

Oh, how sad. And how well done! Love your work.

Beautifully written.. this speaks to me

Anonymous says:

Oh...so sad when feelings of love aren't returned! Nice job, Claudia!

Lovely story, nice job Claudia!


@Diane - you are an incurable romantic :)
@Beth - so far away ...
@Brenda - thank you my dear!
@Sylvia - I am glad it managed to get the emotions through!
@Jo - one small step after the other in my writing quest!
@Bawa - I am happy!
@Beachlover - that is true
@Kathy - :)

Very nicely written.

Wow! What an amazing short story! Loved it!

@Christopher- thank you
@Susan - I am glad you did!

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Thank you for your comments, I appreciate them all!


"A story is not like a road to follow … it's more like a house. You go inside and stay there for a while, wandering back and forth and settling where you like and discovering how the room and corridors relate to each other, how the world outside is altered by being viewed from these windows. And you, the visitor, the reader, are altered as well by being in this enclosed space, whether it is ample and easy or full of crooked turns, or sparsely or opulently furnished. You can go back again and again, and the house, the story, always contains more than you saw the last time. It also has a sturdy sense of itself of being built out of its own necessity, not just to shelter or beguile you."
by Alice Munro

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