It was 1998 when I first set my foot to the city of love and romance, Paris. I travelled with my two children in a freezing weather although it was one of those winters that were not icy at all. The train ride from Zurich to Paris was not long; we were in the marvellous city after five hours. My children and I stayed near Sacre Coeur. So, every day, we commuted to Paris for half an hour and stayed there the whole day; going back to Montparnasse when we were just about to go to bed.
I so wanted to go to the house of Victor Hugo. One morning, I decided to bring my kids to Bastille. As we were about to walk to Place des Vosges, the rain poured and my children and I ended up in Lafayette, shopping. The second time I went to Paris was 2008 and again wanted to go where the author of Les Miserable spent his life writing. But for some reason, I was not able to go again. However, wintertime 2014, I told myself, rain or shine; Place des Vosges, here I come.
I arrived in the house of Victor Hugo nearly 3:00 o’clock in the afternoon. It was not really far from Champs-Elysees where I was staying. The entrance was free and there were only a few people waiting in the queue.
Living in a tropical place for a long time, even with the slight climb of temperature; it was glacial to me. However, the stone walls of the building had kept its warmth and my thick coat gave me unbearable discomfort; I took it off. As I approached the kindest lady that I ever met in Paris, I smiled gently. She handed me some brochures; I walked my way through to the stairs with excitement. It was a big house, actually.
On the first part of the stairway, there was a portrait of the master. The lady standing near the ingress was kind enough to take my photo. My heart was jumping euphorically as I entered the house; silence in the air as I toddled inside. One particular object which caught my attention was the mirror. Due to its oldness; the lustre had been lost. As I scrutinised the antiquity of the mirror; it had given me the creeps as if a wind gushed my face. It was spooky, really. Then, I stared at the portrait of the author of Les Miserable, I felt like I went back in time. To touch the objects that Victor Hugo owned was surreal. In the arena of my tangibility of that moment, to get the grasp of stepping my foot on the floor where Victor Hugo stood was a real delight.
One of my flight of fancy had come true: to see the house of Victor Hugo after envisioning it for a long time. Well and truly: it was magic.