I WAS KICKED out of bed and lost for a good while. Then I reached a mountain village, up in the hills beside the French Riviera. I had to go to the diva’s house. Brynhild. She was on tour somewhere, performing Wagner’s Der Ring des Nibelungen, with valkyrie headdress. She left me multiple envelopes full of instructions on what I was to do and not to do while in her palazzo. Inside, there were mountains of old records piled up. Earth, Wind & Fire. Nina Simone. Neil Diamond. It was so dark inside, and yet bright, because all of the interiors were painted white. It was cold, like an ice palace in the mountains. Her dog was there, sniffing around. The house was so cold, especially after the sun went down on the Riviera, and I was up there, all alone. She told me that I had to get a fire started in the furnace, but I didn’t feel like it. I was just too tired for fires and decided to sleep. When Brynhild arrived back from the concert, still wearing her headdress, the house was cold and she was disappointed. Brynhild scolded me and went to wash herself.