Friday, 16 November 2012

GIVE THE KEYS AWAY PARIS and say goodbye to the ghost of TAMARA DE LEMPICKA

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I remember my great friend Minal Modi once giving me a book called Your word is your wand by Florence Shinn, written in the 1920's. I treasured this book. I loved the idea when my hopes were young that anything I could think of could come true. I used it. Another piece of wisdom she gave me was "Falling in love is terribly common" I wish I had listened to her. I love the feeling, addicted to the pain and passion of life.  Next week I am selling one of the most romantic places in the whole world. My artist studio in Paris 7 Rue Mechain, Montparnasse. Once the artist studio of Tamara de Lempicka and built by the architect Mallet Stevens. I dreamed of living there, gently tortured by the men in my life.  I bought it and decorated it. It was full of original furniture by designers like Prouvet and  Adrienne Gorska her sister. It had a magical, haunted feel to it, as if Tamara watched over me. I had to move there because I once met a man on a train on the Eurostar when it first opened. It seems an age ago, yet at the same time seconds ago.  I had had a terrible argument with my ex husband and an ex boyfriend at the same time. I wanted to leave both.  On the train I fell in love with a wonderful man passionate, aloof and terribly difficult to get to know. So tall, tall in spirit. I had beautiful rose tinted glasses on.  Actually only today I realise how important this romance is for me. It made me grow up, and as I hand over the keys next week, I hand them over with love.  Paris is the most incredible city in the world. The florists, the hairdressers, the cobbled streets, the love affairs, the tiny cakes, the history and the clothes. I am enthralled with everything about it. However, I am English and to move from the city of London would be tricky, my sons sort of liked Paris, but only sort of. My younger edgy and complicated son teased me and said "Thank goodness you took me there so often, my first essay at Eton was about Paris, and I was able to write something"
The apartment contained three flats, it was like a house with a lift. One very hot day I got trapped in the lift with my lover, it stopped for a good twenty minutes. Terrifying. So I sold of two flats. Now the last and most incredible, is out of my life next week. Like the leaves of the tree turning brown, I must leave the most romantic and incredible time of my life, and give this charming and unusual apartment to someone else. We do not keep everything forever and some things are not kitchen sink drama, and meant for dust and lost in wind. I wish every bit of luck to the new woman living there and hope she makes wonderful passionate love there as I did.  I hope she meets a dark stranger in lifts and coffee shops and is kissed on the neck for five minutes at the Trocadero, because this man I will never forget, and will always love, no matter what. It does not matter if I see him, because, being so very romantic, in my soul, he was the only one that mattered. Other people come and go of course, with varying degrees. So aurevoir beautiful paradise and I will keep the memories which cannot be taken away. As Genghis Khan said"It not how many breaths you take, but the moments that take your breath away" 

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