"I just caught a glimpse at your expression. Your open, friendly look struck me right away. It was so beautiful to see!"
How did he react?
He nodded, said, "Merci!", and added some French words I did not understand. Apparently they meant, "this makes me feel warm all over!".
How did I feel?
Have you ever looked into a stranger's eyes and felt you saw their soul? I did with Gilles.
It is a big claim. I know. Nonetheless, for a moment, I was overwhelmed with the friendliness and wisdom I detected in his glance. I felt as though he was a soft, open, polite guy. My impression was so intense I needed to share it with him: I approached him. Greeting him in English I learned he was French and only spoke a little bit of English. My one-year-of-high-school-French did not help and neither did Gilles' head shaking to my question, "German?". i ended up complimenting him in English, unsure whether he understood. His modest nod and "Merci...?" left me wondering still. Had he gotten what I had said? Finally, once my friend translated his words to me, I realized he had received the message after all. When I looked back at him I spotted a slight sparkle in his growing smile. No doubt, he had comprehended my message.