We walked from the Louvre back to the Beaux-Arts. Then we walked along the Seine again. We walked to a bridge. I don’t know. It has tripping stones steps set without warning into a rational pattern all across the bridge.

My colleague stumbled and fell flat, fell face down into the downward incline. She saved her face but maybe not her head, as I could not understand why she refused to admit why she was hurt. She turned to the railing, toward the Eiffel tower, turned her face away so that we could not see her face.

“We’ll take a taxi,” volunteered my husband. “We could take a taxi.”That had been the original plan and I am not sure how we wound up on this stupid freezing walk in the dark.

“The only choice left,” I said, “is whether we take the taxi to the hospital or to the theatre.”

But the Canadian woman was already walking down the incline, determined to continue along the very bank of the Seine.