Alicia Keys

Alicia Keys Notes From The Road    ·    August 2nd, 2004

Since a few weeks Alicia writes a column for the NY Daily News. Sunday August 1st it got published for the 2nd time and here’s what our girl had to tell! Enjoy!! )

Every time i’ve heard about France, it’s always about the ‘magic of Paris.’ I have spent hours and hours trying to identify that magic, thinking it was something that i would discover just by being there, but it is more that that. And although Paris is beautiful, magical city, France is not defined solely by a city itself. Paris, Lyon, Nice. It’s something more.

The magic of France was first revealed to me in a seemingly ordinary thing called the French accent. I had only seen France out of hotel windows or from a moving car, so it was the accent that I could connect to most. I cant deny it: it isthe most sensual accent in the world and it was the sound of spoken French that made the country so dazzling to me.

Hearing an English question translated into francias allowed me to understand how language can be a song: The way the French are so attentive to detail; the way they are drenched in sophistication, style, grace and glamour; the way they serve small chopped-up black olives that look like caviar but taste even better while asking you what your apertif will be is endearing. THe way the z’s blend and the r’s roll over so slightly made me imagine all kinds of mystical words being whispered in my ear on a hot summer evening’s stroll, while my mind ran wild with tantalizing thought about what a night with a sophisticated Frenchman could hold.

Since then, I’ve discovered that the legendary romance that’s become synonymous with France is not atop the Eiffel Tower or in the bakeries filled with hot baguettes, inside le Louvre or on a stroll down the Champs-Elysees. It isnt in the sidewalk cafes that serve cafe au laits or even the marinas with their bobbing yachts framed by the ocean’s easy waters or the archaic structures recalling Old World culture. It isnt ath the ballet or in the secret village of Eze, where the streets are made of ancient stone dating back to 500 B.C., neither is it in the depths of the Mediterranean Sea that feels like satin when you swim in it.

Wait, who am I kidding? That is the magic of France- all of it. I realized that the reason I couldnt find the magic before was because I was only looking for it in one place. I couldnt find it going from one box to another. I couldnt find it on a 10-minute break from an interview. And i’d NEVER find it after a long show on a long bus ride to the next city.

All this time it’s been right there in front of me, just waiting for me to be open enough (and have enough time) to walk through its wonder and feel it.

The exclusive magic that i’ve finally found is in the personal experience of France-and each person’s is different. It’s in the discovery. The silent moments in plcaes you’ve only heard about. Its in the special words of the people you find there. The way their lips move and the way a soft French voice can mesmerize your ears and your heart.

All of these are the romance of France. It’s not just down one particular street. It cannot be contained in one tiny place. And somewhere between “Bonjour” and “Bonne nuit” lies the unknown mystery of all there is to find. It is all the magic you could ever hope to discover. It is everywhere!!

Source: NY Daily News

Thx 2 NiPs FrOm NyC

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