I left for Japan on October 25, 1984, unsuspecting that this date would mark the beginning of a 92 day countdown to the end of a love affair. Nothing extraordinary -- but to me, at the the time, the unhappiest moment of my life, and one for which I blamed that trip itself. I got back to France on January 28, 1985. From that moment, whenever people asked me how it went, I chose to skip the Far East bit and tell them about my suffering instead. In return I started asking both friend and chance encounters: "When did you suffer most?" -- I decided to continue such exchanges until I had got over my pain by comparing it with other people's, or had worn out my own story through sheer repetition.