Jesse: I think that book that I wrote was like building something… so that I wouldn’t forget the details of the time that we spent together. You know, like, just as a reminder, that once, we really did meet. You know, that this was real, this happened.
Celine: I’m happy you’re saying that, because… I mean, I always feel like a freak because I’m never able to move on like this. People just have an affair, or even entire relationships… they break up and they forget. They move on like they would have changed brand of cereals. I feel I was never able to forget anyone I’ve been with… because each person had their own specific qualities. You can never replace anyone. What is lost is lost. Each relationship, when it ends, really damages me. I never fully recover. That’s why I’m very careful with getting involved… because it hurts too much. Even getting laid, I actually don’t do that… because I will miss of the person the most mundane things. Like I’m obsessed with little things. Maybe I’m crazy, but when I was a little girl… my mom told me that I was always late to school. One day she followed me to see why. I was looking at chestnuts falling from the trees, rolling on the sidewalk… or ants crossing the road, the way a leaf casts a shadow on a tree trunk. Little things. I think it’s the same with people. I see in them little details, so specific to each of them… that move me and that I miss and will always miss. You can never replace anyone… because everyone is made of such beautiful, specific details. Like, I remember the way your beard has a bit of red in it… and how the sun was making it glow… that morning right before you left. I remembered that, and I missed it. Really crazy, right?
Jesse: Now I know for sure. You wanna know why I wrote that stupid book?
Jesse: So you’d might come to a reading in Paris… and I could walk up to you and ask, “Where the fuck were you?”
Celine: No… You think I’d be here today?
Jesse: I’m serious. I think I wrote it, in a way, to try to find you.
Celine: Okay, that’s… I know that’s not true… but that’s sweet of you to say that.
Jesse: I think it is true. What were the chances of us ever meeting again?
Celine: After that December, I’d say almost zero. But we’re not real anyway, right? We’re just characters in that old lady’s dream. She’s on her deathbed, fantasizing about her youth. So of course we had to meet again.
Jesse: Oh, God. Why weren’t you there in Vienna?
Celine: I told you why.
Jesse: I know why, I just… I wish you would have been. Our lives might have been so much different.
Celine: You think so?
Jesse: I actually do.
Celine: Maybe not. Maybe we would have hated each other eventually.
Jesse: What, like we hate each other now?
Celine: You know, maybe we’re… We’re only good at brief encounters… walking around in European cities, in warm climate.
Jesse: Oh, God. Why didn’t we exchange phone numbers and stuff? Why didn’t we do that?
Celine: Because we were young and stupid.
Jesse: Do you think we still are?
Celine: I guess when you’re young you just believe… there’ll be many people you’ll connect with. Later in life you realize it only happens a few times.
Jesse: And you can screw it up, you know. Misconnect.
Celine: The past is the past. It was meant to be that way.
Jesse: You really believe that? That everything’s fated?
Celine: Well, you know, the world might be less free than we think.
Celine: When given these exact circumstances, that’s what will happen every time. Two part hydrogen, one part oxygen, you’ll get water every time.
Jesse: No, I mean, what if your grandmother had lived a week longer, you know? Or passed away a week earlier? Days, even? Things might have been different. I believe that.
Celine: You can’t think like that, it’s…
Jesse: I know You shouldn’t on most things, but… It’s just, on this one, it seemed like something was off, you know. In the months leading up to my wedding, I was thinking about you all the time. Even on my way there, I’m in the car, a buddy of mine is driving me downtown… and I’m staring out the window and I think I see you… not far from the church, right… folding up an umbrella and walking into a deli… on the corner of 13th and Broadway. And I thought I was going crazy. But now I think it probably was you.
Celine: I lived on 11 th and Broadway.
Jesse: You see?