The United States is, without question, the most religious country in the so-called developed world. If the pollsters are to…
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“Not sure exactly,” I said, my mouth reacting before my brain.
This made him look at me with care—as I had also spoken in French.
“Not sure?” he asked.
“Two weeks,” I said quickly.
“You have a ticket back to America?”
“Show it to me, please,” he said.
I handed over the ticket. He studied it, noting the return date was January 10.
“How can you be ‘not sure,’ ” he asked, “when you have proof?”
“I wasn’t thinking,” I said, sounding sheepish.
“Évidemment,” he said. His stamp landed on my passport. He pushed my documents back to me, saying nothing. Then he nodded for the next passenger in line to step forward. He was done with me.
I headed off to baggage claim, cursing myself for raising official questions
about my intentions in France. But I had been telling the truth.
I didn’t know how long I’d be staying here. And the airplane ticket—a
last-minute buy on an Internet travel site, which offered cheap fares if
you purchased a two-week round-trip deal—would be thrown out as
soon as January 10 had passed me by. I wasn’t planning to head back to
the States for a very long time.
How can you be “not sure” when you have proof?
Since when does proof ever provide certainty?