The locksmith finally manages to beat Parisian traffic, and now, a full hour and half later than his expected time of completion, he unhinges the lockbox, inserts a new cylinder, and asks me to test the new set of über sophisticated skeleton keys to make sure the parts fit.
It’s a green light, and upon passing Go, Céline forks over a completely indecent sum of dinero, almost the price of an international plane ticket, to change out the lock box with broken key to a functioning lockbox without key-broken-in-keyhole scenario.
Because, you see, these super sophisticated cylindrical keys are impossible to forge, sure, but they have an uncanny ability of snapping in two in the hole, rendering the entire concept obsolete as one is either locked in, locked out, or living with doors wide open.
No matter, for now, we have a new lockbox, keyhole suspended with hydraulics, a meager push does click, a dip does clack.
So, click-clack, I lock the door behind me and cross my fingers that it opens up again, for my morning duties as houseguest end just as the sky turns blue and as the clocks strikes mid-afternoon, and it’s off!
Apparently, this humble abode is centrally located, and it’s not until I see the ‘hood in daylight that I realize just how freaking ridiculously well situated this find really is, for once I turn the corner and round the bend, I almost trip over my own two feet.
Paris, it seems, has just thrown up on my cousin’s doorstep.
Before me, I have a full spread of all things Parisian–the Eiffel Tower, Ferris wheel, obelisk, Seine, Grand Palais, Louvre, Rue Rivoli, Parliament, Hôtel des Invalides, and more open up in panorama, a deck of superstar highlights that make me feel like I’ve just won the Parisian travel lotto.
Holy crap, this is some redonkulous scenery, and I chuckle to myself at how absurd it is that this budget backpacker find herself shoulder rubbing with folks from the 1er arrondissement.
Pray tell, Watson, I believe this just might do for a week’s stay.