I rode down the escalator, of course. There was a little pharmacy there, with friendly-smiled white-vested name-tagged employees.
But none of the medicines were familiar to me, and the people there only spoke French.
We stumbled through a transaction, between my halting one-month-in-elementary-school French and a lot of gestures. I bought some emerald blue breath drops. They didn't want money or credit cards - in the end, I traded them my shoes for the breath drops. Not a good deal, I know, but the breath drops were beautiful. They really did look like gemstones, not liquid at all. The label was incomprehensible.
I'd had garlicky pasta for lunch, out camping, and was about to meet the CEO of a big investment company, so I wanted to have nice breath.
It tasted like snow and oxygen and silver. I felt a sudden, dramatic shiver shaking in my spine, and I blinked in surprise. When I opened my eyes, the world had taken a blue tint.
I blinked my eyes again, and I was at the restaurant with the investment CEO. I blinked again and the meeting was over - it went great, thank you, and she actually complimented me on my breath - and I was in Paris, collecting rare books. I blinked again and I was in Boston, reporting on key developments in network mathematics in a secret symposium under the city. I blinked again and I was fostering baby sloths in Costa Rica. I blinked again and I was in Japan. Idaho. The River Ganges. The slums of New York. The penguin-filled blue ice of Antarctica. The skyscrapers of Stockholm.
And then I blinked again and now I'm back home. The world isn't tinted blue anymore, my breath still smells good, my camping buddies are still back in the Sierras and angry at me for ditching them, and I'm writing on LiveJournal.
Because I love you so much!