I have a confession. I am disgusted with myself..
Today destiny led me to share a sidewalk with the Rector and Archpriest of Notre Dame Cathedral, Patrick Chauvet. Normal people want to cross paths with Movie Stars or famous singers or chefs- but I’ve been fan-girling the Boss of Notre Dame for years, (and Robin Williams, but that ship has sailed) even more so since the fire two years ago.
Watching interviews with him, I always loved how he seemed so NOT like how you would expect the Archpriest of the most famous cathedral in the world to be, stern and probably wearing a hair shirt under his starched white robes for 24/7 self penance.
Patrick Chauvet seemed so normal and friendly, like the kind of guy you could have a beer with and talk about the hilarious historical French series Camelot. I’m not a huge believer of manifesting destiny, but I even created this note on my phone last week when I was loitering around the cathedral on Holy Thursday hoping to run into him. I tend to forget names when I’m nervous and didn’t want to forget his or second guess it (or the name of the Archbishop and other people I’m too self conscious to share with you ).
I knew it was only a matter of time until I’d run into him and I couldn’t wait for that day. I just didn’t think it would be so soon!
This morning, on an empty street not far from where he lives and the cathedral itself, he approached me from the opposite direction and I instantly knew it was him. Alone and carrying a grocery bag, there was no more of a perfect moment to greet him to say how much I admire him.
But within those 10 seconds of him walking towards me, I panicked and then CHOKED! My self doubt began with how to address him.
Excusez moi Monseigner? Monsieur? Père? And OMG, WHAT DO I SAY?! I had no idea what to say!
- I’m your biggest fan! Can I have a selfie?
- So that fire sucked huh?
- Fancy seeing you outside the office! Working hard or hardly working? hahaha
And so I shamefully lowered my head as he passed by, and my perfect opportunity with him. Oh well, next time I won’t blow it. Next time I’ll be ready!
Tell me, what would YOU say to the Head Honcho of Notre Dame Cathedral??