Something has happened which appeals strongly to my senses of humour, fun, human warmth and downright unreality.
Starting early, I’d walked though Bristol’s morning rush hour – photographing – and then had a good second breakfast, a Full English, in Browns restaurant. I was headed for a noted seller of world class beer when my way was barred by this wonderfully smiling and welcoming woman >>> click onto the image twice to get the full warmth of the bonhomie!
Well, I mean, on the spur of the moment, just what exactly does one do, darlings??? There was nothing else for it so, trying desperately to remember what I’d read about the sack of Rome by the Visigoths, together with my experiences as a rugby forward, I just waded on into the clinch – I managed four frames as we closed in towards each other – and then suddenly found myself rather breathlessly encased in this very soft, warm and sweetly perfumed bear hug that seemed to go on forever.
I thought about turning on the charm – something like “Werle, Little Darlin’ … come here often, do you? … “. Something cultivated, after all I’m known for a certain urbanity and savoir faire, and I was trying to hit that fine line between platitude and something that, uttered however incautiously, might send anyone’s senses reeling. But, not being as young as I used to be, and certainly out of practice, I could in the end only manage a somewhat breathless squeak – “Please don’t squash the camera!” – to which she replied “Yes, it is rather a big one, isn’t it!”.
One thing led to another and I was of course minded to point out that, being mirrorless, the camera wasn’t nearly as big as it might have been but, thinking better of it, deftly avoiding what even for me would have been a faux pas, I managed to mumble vague pleasantries and we got down to discussing the lack of friendliness and love in today’s often emotionally cold, modern society.
At last we parted – actually I was minded to walk round the block again, change my appearance, and have another dose – she was hugging women too, after all – but instead staggered on towards the noted purveyor of beer where, wonderfully, I found bottles of not only the Westmalle Tripel but also the Trappistes Rochefort 10, two absolutely delicious and very strong (9.5% and 11.3% respectively) beers brewed in Trappist monasteries in Belgium.
Certainly a Friday morning to remember, and a simple warmth of humanity – and, in us both perhaps, something of an uninhibited dottiness too – all things to both value and to be reassured by.