A friend of mine has a staging company. When people sell their homes, they hire Linda to come in and decorate. She brings in furniture, lightens up the clutter, and makes everything look beautiful. Linda's taste is exquisite, somewhat shabby chic. She likes old furniture with chipping paint, and she always finds pieces with amazing intricate details and deep, rich colors. My taste runs along the same lines (though I don't have nearly the same eye), so sometimes when Linda goes on shopping sprees, I tag-along not so much to buy but to live vicariously through her.
Today, we visited Linda's friend Coco who sells French antiques in a warehouse on Bryant. If you were lost in the French countryside, you might expect to bump into Coco who would invite you over to her farm house. She's beautiful and friendly and she has an adorable French accent. Her taste is impeccable, and the linens, bistro chairs, marble-top tables, wrought iron beds, and farm doors filling her space are gorgeous.
Alice, Linda, and I spent about an hour going through the piles of French antiques. Alice found some wonderful garden gnomes, doll chairs, and baby beds. I fell in love with some school workbooks from 1928 in which students had written their lessons in handwriting that was so perfect it's hard to believe a computer didn't produce it. I found one in which a student had written Alice's actual name, which happens to be quite French, again and again and again. I'm a Francophile and I love old things, so I was in heaven.
After about an hour, when all the other shoppers had left, Coco told us that she needed to pick up her children. (She was gently kicking us out.)
"How old are your children?" I asked.
"Three and six," she said.
"Oh, they must go to the French-American school." I said. It seems like all French people who live in the city go to this school.
"No, we could never afford that. He actually goes to Flynn."
"Flynn? Did you say Flynn?" My eyes grew about three sizes.
We proceeded to talk about all the reasons she loves and adores Flynn. "I really can't say a bad thing about the school," said this super-cool French woman who speaks English, French, and Spanish. She went to college in Spain so that's why she's fluent in Spanish as well.
Our conversation ended with her saying, "If you want to go to Flynn, you really need to list it first."
All weekend, I've been stressing about where to rank Flynn on my list. At this moment, I almost felt as if I had encountered an angel.