It is taking far too long for me to get out of this jet lag. I forced myself to stay awake till about 10 pm and took a sleeping pill I bought at the local pharmacy, Donormyl, so I wouldn’t wake up in the middle of the night. The sleeping pill caused a new problem: it made me want to sleep all the time.

Yesterday, during the few hours when I felt awake- and hungry – I took the no. 7 to the 10th arrondisement to an area known as Little Jaffna. There I ate idlis at Saravana Bhavan and watched Tamil waiters conversing in Tamil, Indian English and (presumably French) French. Little Pondicherry, a restaurant, enticed customers to try standard Indian fare as well. One of the passages on Rue du Faubourg St-Denis contained only Indian restaurants (with a North Indian man screaming matherchod at someone else walking away) and barber shops. An elderly gentleman at Saravana Bhavan ate idlis, ordered filter coffee and swiped at his smartphone, telling the waiter in Tamil that he could now read The Hindu sitting in Paris.