Gallivanting around

August 15, 2020

For the second Saturday in a row after my usual morning shopping, I took a seat in the same Israeli restaurant on the Westerstraat (I love the sound of their spoken language, by the way). The outside tables have the best sunlight for a little tan whilst this guarantees me the right spot for my anthropological experiment.

I’m drawn by the behaviour of passers-by. At this day and time of the year, they are either tourists exploring the city’s attractions or locals heading to or from the Noordermarkt.

They all seem relaxed and released from daily preoccupations. For most people, weekends give permission to set problems aside. They pass by me showing lightness and enthusiasm, looking like the two resting days ahead will boost their inner selves. Even the dogs have that cheery spirit in their walks.

Dogs’ breeds can also say a lot about their human owners. I see small, big, pedigree, crossbred, fluffy, short haired ones... and then I hear an Italian lady slightly screaming over the phone. I can tell she is not having a fight although the fellow by my side got a little bit scared.

I pay my bill and on my way back home this Spanish accent from a couple behind me made me want to guess which part of Latin America they come from. It almost felt like those old months of August full of nationalities strolling around the streets before the pandemic hit us all.


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