Today I had been the recipient of a great honor: I had received an invitation to dine tomorrow at Madame de Guermantes’ mansion. “I’ll be the talk of le Tout-Paris”, I thought. Because not everyone who is part of “le Tout-Paris” can enjoy the privilege of being invited to dine with the Duchess of Guermantes. Even her own husband is not allowed that privilege every day. It is true that the invitation clearly stated that I should bring with me my own dinner, a dinner service and a chair to sit. Also, I would not be allowed to go to the bathroom under any circumstances and I would have to wash the dishes. But what did it matter? I could share a table with the Duchess! At last my dream was going to come true: I was going to enter high society! I would stop being invisible at social gatherings. People with a title of nobility would stop slapping on my neck and putting little stones in my shoes. I would be initiated into the mysteries of Parisian aristocracy. Templar secrets would be within my reach. I would find out what the hell is the baphomet!… However, I could not wait for the morning to come to tell Block, so I ran to the Latin Quarter boarding-house where he stays and started screaming his name. He leant out the window, panicked: “Are you crazy?! It’s two in the morning! You’re gonna wake the landlady!” (Block is terrified of his landlady since she declared war on him as a result of a murky incident with a mongoose.) Then he went down to open the street door and made me climb the steep stairs in a hurry to avoid the anger of the landlady who was already approaching with a broom at the ready. In the rush and in the dark, I stumbled on a step and fell backward with such bad luck that I dislocated both ankles. Goodbye to my dinner appointment!

This is a non-profit blog whose purpose is to raise funds for children in need. So if you want to make a donation in exchange for this story, click on this link to UNICEF. I really appreciate it!

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