Back in the metro
Once the universal health care obtained the pieces of the puzzle started to get together. The 75 pour cent off Navigo pass followed the CMU and I enjoyed being back in the crowded metro wagons during rush hours. I hadn't taken the metro since unemployed. I now felt being like everybody else, part of the irritated and at the same time extremely polite rushing and pushing mass. I also noticed some change. More homeless people were sleeping in metro stations than before. Also passengers were less relaxed than before the terrorist attacks because of the security announcements, “Attentive ensemble. Veuillez signaler tout objet abandonné ou un comportement suspect à nos agents“ every ten minutes. I also noticed that people started becoming paranoid about the Arabic language and hijab scarfs. Laura’s classmate’s mother admitted having run out of Mc Donald’s with her son only because there were so many Arabic speaking customers.
The tambourine boy had grown up
I myself got cold sweats in metro a wagon a few days after a terrorist attack. It was because I noticed I was standing next to a black man sitting in a big metallic storage box I have seen on TV news forecasts from Syria, used for missile or firearms transportation. On my other side an Arabic man was reading the Coran. It was obvious that they didn’t even know each other. They just happened to be in a wrong place in the wrong moment.
I recognized the same accordionist I had crossed some years ago and who was still going from wagon to wagon with the same tambourine boy holding the begging cup. Except that the tambourine boy had grown up. He still hadn’t learned to play the tambourine but instead of the sweet bright eyed boy there was now a clumsy and shy teenager. Now and then he glanced embarrassed at young tourist girls.