Some words simply don't translate well. Even into English, although it has twice as many words as any other Indo-European language. Autrement is one of these. You can't translate it as differently, because that's différemment. And so the best I can do this evening is otherly.
Which actually fits the atmosphere of the Salon Vivre Autrement quite well. It was very... otherly.
This morning, my Montmartoise and I, all clad in the latest fashions (shift dress and flowery scarf for me, skinny grey jeans and military jacket for her, boots for both of us) set out for what we imagined would be a day of glorifying the environment and wallowing in our own glorious boho chicness.
Instead, we found ourselves alone amidst hordes of aggressive grannies prepared to sacrifice their first great-grandchild for the latest new-age, crystal-salt from the Himalayas candle holder. All's fair in love and wacky ecological warfare, apparently. And so our lovely boots were trod upon, our slim, youthful figures shoved against wooden racks of essential oils as purple-haired dears in ill-fitting knit cardigans and vegan sandals clawed at what the hacks guraranteed would restore them to their glorious twenties (that's the 1920s...)
Now I have nothing against our beloved senior citizens (in fact, I currently reside with two lovely specimens, both of which will kill me for referring to them as such). But seriously, these little old ladies were mean! Barely had we managed to get our hands on some herbal tea and a bar of organic chocolate (the least bizarre items on offer) that, shoulders slumped in defeat, we were forced to retreat to the hobbit-owned crêpe stand outside (organic crêpes, apparently) to drown our humiliation in ethical cheese and ham.
On the upside, we were very popular with the eco-men (who, despite appearances, could hold their own against the best New York City construction workers in a wolf-calling contest). Except the eco-men are strange, very strange. Do I look silly enough to buy a perfume made out of vegetable oil and "purple" (yes, as in the colour purple...)?!
My suggestion for next year's Live Otherly fair is to append the following motto: "save the world, buy wacky shit from pimply scam-artists." If only Al Gore knew it was that simple.