He remembered asking directions of an elderly man once in Paris, to be met with the words, 'Monsieur, il ne faut pas partir d'ici.'* That was the nub of the matter, a false start...
Strangers, Ch. 7
My own life was disappointing - I was mal partie, started on the wrong footing; so I am trying to edit the whole thing.
*I must apologise for making a hash of the quote in earlier versions of this post. I'm not a good French speaker.