Flâneuse(verb) (fem): An idler, dawdling observer in a city

So much, is on my mind these days and I spend more time writing in my various notebooks and journals and far less time on electronic devices. I have to admit my handwriting is atrocious. Seriously…I have not done significant handwriting since 1998. I stare at it and think…Is that human communication? But it’s getting better…almost legible to other humans! Don’t worry I am not going to subject you to my pages and pages of thoughts (even if I could read them), but I thought I might start to share some of them that seemed fitting for my adventure! So here goes (sorry it’s a bit long I completely understand if you are moving on at this point).

I didn’t know what flâneuse was until my girlfriend gave me a book titled this as my going away present (along with an incredibly sweet note inscribed inside).

Flâneur: is the quintessentially masculine figure of privilege and leisure who strides the capitals of the world with abandon.

Flâneuse: is the feminine version of this word (for those of us currently learning french  we know this because it ends in “euse”). A determined, resourceful individual keenly attuned to the creative potential of the city and the liberating possibilities of a good walk.

As a general rule, there is not much I do “with abandon”. Who has time to do anything with abandon, observing, and taking it all in? We all should be taking time to do this but rarely does the pace of any of our lives allow this. So this week I took some time and Flâneused (this definitely isn’t the correct conjugation of the verb but I am going to roll with it )

I flâneused in Nice, Toulouse, and Carcassonne. It takes a bit of focus to do this and not be distracted by the hundreds of other things that need to be done. But it is fabulous. To stop and really check out a particularly pretty building, or stop in the church and sit in awe of the beauty, or it sit on a patio in the warm sun with a glass of wine and appreciate (I mean really appreciate) your surroundings is truly a joy when you are not focused on what has to happen next. My hubby is always telling me to live in the moment and stop racing for what is next…I think I am starting to understand a little bit of what he means. I have a long way to go to master this skill…but it’s a start.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s