Tuesday, February 23, 2016

“Comme d’habitude” or

As one has the habit of doing.

Sometimes there are phrases in one of the three languages that I use on a fairly regular basis that fit better than any translation that I could undertake in another: comme d’habitude is one of these. It can be either slightly pejorative as in “she didn’t get dressed until 10 – as was her habit”, “he showed up again late for work, as was his want”,  “they went to the movies yet again last Saturday night – never doing anything out of the mold”, etc.

It can also though denote stability or, in my current case, a wonderful state of affairs where one returns to one’s habits!

As I can finally dress myself on the days where I don’t need a shower or shampoo I am finally free to follow my normal (another way of expressing “comme d’habitude”) schedule. And today all the criteria were met for me to finally walk up to the village as was my want before the accident: I could dress myself in a timely manner (without waiting until 10 or later); it was warm enough for the cape that I have to envisage walking outside; it wasn’t raining although overcast and, most importantly, the phrase “comme d’habitude” ran through my head like a leitmotif. Habits can be wonderful.

It took me longer than it used to: what is it about a seemingly minor accident that affects one’s whole system? But oh the joy of walking into my local bakery on my own two feet, sit down to my usual table, see my coffee buddies and pick up my mail – as usual.

OK that was enough for the morning, if not perhaps for the day, and I didn’t refuse the offer of a lift home. Still comforting to know that soon “comme d’habitude” will be simply that – as usual or according to my normal pattern.