Bird by Bird

Bird-People2

Audrey the maid as a sparrow. In this scene, she accidentally gets stuck in a room after being chased by a cat in the hallway.

I’m reading Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott. It’s funny and inspiring. If you want to write a story but don’t know how to tackle it, read this one.

The title came from her childhood, when her little brother became overwhelmed by a report he had to complete on the subject of birds. “Bird by bird, buddy,” their writer-father had said as the boy sat in front of his bird books. “Just do it bird by bird.”

———

Today I watched Bird People by director Pascale Ferran. It’s about two people who’s lives cross at the Hilton Hotel outside of the Paris Airport: one is young French student and hotel maid Audrey Camuzet, and the other one Silicon Valley Exec Gary Newman.

After a panic attack in the night, Gary deliberately misses his business flight to Dubai, quits his job and leaves his wife, deciding to remain in Paris. He spends the next few days soberly arranging details with his lawyer, employer and wife before finally breaking down into tears.

Audrey spontaneously turns into a sparrow after seeking fresh air on the hotel roof. She spends the next several hours on a flight adventure, once entering an artist’s room where he sketches her as she eats Pringles crumbs from his plate, and once following the front desk clerk home to realise he’s homeless and sleeps in his car in the forest.

She almost gets eaten by a cat and an owl, too.

Gary and Audrey don’t meet until the end, when they run into each other outside the elevator, speak a bit of broken English and French respectively, and shake hands as they exchange names.

The whole movie builds up to the point of them meeting, but you are left wondering if they will ever see each other again. The last scene is Gary leaving with his bags as she waves goodbye, still flushed and happy having been a bird in flight all night long.

The whole movie is centered on the idea that people are birds in one way or another.

———-

I just took a silly personality quiz the other day, and one question asked which super power I would choose.

I chose the ability to fly.

Related: Holy Birds

8 comments

  1. I love Anne Lamott but I haven’t was this one yet.

  2. dancinginaugustrain

    Lamott is one of my favorite authors!!!

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