MARCH 5, 2001 - APRIL 25,2001

"For there were, in the environs of Combray, two "ways" which we used to take our walks, and so diametrically opposed that we would actually leave the house by different doors according to the way we had chosen: the way towards Méséglise-la-Vineuse, which we called also "Swann's way" because to get there one had to pass along the boundary of M. Swann's estate, and the "Guermantes way." ....Since my father used to always to speak of the Méséglise way as comprising the finest view of a plain that he knew anywhere, and the Guermantes way as typical of river scenery, I invested each of them, by conceiving them in this way as two distinct entities, with that cohesion, that unity which belong only to the figments of the mind; the smallest detail of either of them seemed to me a precious thing exemplifying the special excellence of the whole while beside them, before one had reached the sacred soil of one or the other, the purely material paths amid which they were set down as the ideal view over a plain and the ideal river landscape, were no more worth the trouble of looking at them than, to a keen playgoer and lover of dramatic art, are the little streets that run past the walls of a theatre. But above all I set between them, far more than the mere distance in miles that separated one from the other, the distance that there was between the two parts of my brain in which I used to think of them, one of those distances of the mind which not only keeps things apart, but cut them off from one another and put them on different planes. And this distinction was rendered still more absolute because of the habit we had of never going both ways on the same day, or in the course of the same walk, but shut them off, so to speak, far apart from each other and unaware of each other's existence, in airtight compartments of separate afternoons..."

- Marcel Proust from Swann's Way


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