Friday, 10 October 2008
I can't remember precisely when, but I was young: less than ten years old, I think. I was old enough to know that being on holiday in France with my family was estranging, because we were in a foreign country. It was a question, to me, of somehow fixing that fact, registering its strangeness, and preventing it from slipping away when I returned home. So, on the beach, and with an inchoate sense of the necessity for secrecy, I ate a little of France: unpalatable grains of beach (and the next day a little dirt from the campsite). If a man who eats a human leg is as much a cannibal as a man who eats the whole human, then I have begun the process of devouring France. It is inside me.