Frankie in Paris

Frankie in Paris by Shauna McGuiness Read Free Book Online

Book: Frankie in Paris by Shauna McGuiness Read Free Book Online
Authors: Shauna McGuiness
was a cherry-colored
wood.   Our shower in the tiny bathroom
resembled the one in my parents’ RV.   It
was muggy inside.   No air conditioner!  
    Looking into a mirror hanging over the small
desk, I saw that my bangs were greasy and stuck to my forehead.   Sweat created a sheen on my upper lip, and my
lipstick had almost worn off.   The ring
of bright red around my lips looked gross.       
    I needed water.   Right now. If the water gives me diarrhea (or is that
only in Mexico?),
I can figure out how to ask for Pepto in French.   I turned on the tap and cupped my hands.   The water felt wonderful, but tasted odd, sort
of metallic, maybe.   I just drank enough
to clear the dust out of my throat.
    An annoyed voice called from the bedroom, “We
need to change rooms.”
    “What do you mean?   I like this room.”
    “Look out the window.”  
    Looking down, I saw the top of a business
building.   It was a one-story building—so
you could see the white, industrial looking roof, with dirty, murky puddles
covering most of it.  
    I guess this wasn’t the view of Paris she was
expecting.  
    Picking up our bags, we headed back down the
elevator.
    “Excuse me, Henri,” Lulu announced.   Instead of calling him Onree , the way the natives would have, she just called him Henry .   “We need another room.”
    “What eez wrong weez your room?”   Henri questioned, alarmed.
    “I don’t like it, that’s what is wrong .”   She puffed up her small body in defense.
    “ Oui, oui .   Alright, let me see what eez available.”   He disappeared for a moment.  
    It was suffocatingly hot in the lobby.   I looked outside the large glass doors, and
sure enough, there was Paris.
    Henri brought out a different set of keys and
made a trade.   We would still be on the
third floor, across the hall from our first room.
    Trudging back over to the elevator with our
luggage (Henri didn’t even ask if we needed help this time), we found our new
accommodation.   It was basically the same
setup with a different view.  
    This time the view was of the side of a brick
building.   A brick wall.   Apparently, this would work for us.
    ***
    Exhaustion sat on my chest like one of those
weird aprons that they make you wear when you get your teeth x-rayed.   I plunked down on the edge of my bed and
ended up lying spread eagle on top of the flowery comforter.
    “You can’t just lie there!   We’re on vacation!”   Lulu yanked her suitcase up on her bed and
began pulling out all of her clothes.
    “What are you looking for?”  
    “These!”   She beamed and held up a pair of white shoes.   I had a
pair of shoes like these when I was in seventh grade.   They were flats, with no heel, whatsoever.   Made of   some kind of synthetic material, with tops that
looked woven, they were as un-Lulu as un-Lulu could be.   Like white, wicker ballet slippers.
    “And what are those?”   I asked, tentatively.
    “They’re flats.”
    “How did those flats get in your suitcase?”
    “I packed them, of course.”
    “What are you going to do with them?”
    “I thought I would wear these while we are
here, so that I can do some walking.”
    “Wow, okay.”   I sat up and looked at her.
    “So let’s go and do some walking!”
    I really, really didn’t want to leave my soft seat on the unfamiliar bed.   From across the room, I called my brush and
lipstick out of my purse.   Once they
reached my hands, I brushed my hair and reapplied my lipstick.   Paris’s
first impression of moi had to be
perfect!
    “Okay, let’s go!”
    “Let’s go!”
    “Where are we going?”
    “I don’t know,” she smiled, with an impish look
on her face, looking much, much younger.
    Staring at her for a moment, I used all my
mental strength to open up the door, and then waited for her to exit.
    Turning to look up at me over her shoulder, she
said,   “You shouldn’t do that,” frowning,
“There might be cameras hidden somewhere

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