Last night’s event at Librairie Obliques in Auxerre was nothing short of a gift from beginning to end. I took the train from Gare de Bercy in Paris yesterday afternoon, and I was met at Auxerre St. Gervais by Grégoire Courtois, owner of the bookstore. Before the reading, I had a chance to walk through town – down Quai de la Marine, past the L’Yonne River and some wonderful medieval architecture and up the hill to the bookstore.
Librairie Obliques is a wonderful store, and one which clearly fosters a community of readers – every seat was full. This was my first event in France, and the format was different than I was used to: Rather than a straight reading, it was a Q & A between myself, my translator Andy Walken, Grégoire and Benoît Virot. Afterwards, I was asked to play a short tune on banjo and to sign some books.
I’ll head back to Paris this afternoon, as Festival America begins tonight. Even though my time in Auxerre was short, I’m so thankful to have had a chance to see this beautiful town.