8 October 2006

Tortus Eyes

An effeminate sounding man sings to cheesy rock guitars and those magic 80's synth noises in this, the Turtle Cafe. The mascots stare silent, they are giant brown tortuses of 2 dimensions who swim through the painted white stone walls. At the far end, a gold Islamic pattern decorates a wall where a black trumpet-man makes a distorted blowing-too-hard face.

My senses are delighted by a deep golden fruity tubor beer and an overfilled hot sandwish. I listen vaguely to a couple who talk on the other side of a stone pillar. In english they discuss their future directions being different, a little more intimately than I suppose they'd care for me to overhear.

But it is hard not to listen, I cannot help but follow the drama, the gentle sadness on the edge of their voices. They talk of studying in different cities, but under their unanswered invitations is the sure possibility of long farewells.

For me, life is the other way around! I am someone somewhere where they know no-one, so each conversation I enjoy is the opposite, even the ordering of a beer is alive with fire of possibly. This is a nice way to live, to feel the unkown happily peeking through to your life. So maybe it's because I know nothing, but I'd like to take this sensation back with me.

Maybe such analysis is not fair on my boring couple's conversation of the dull technicalities of living in different places. Is it not to stand on false premises: aren't people spending a pleasant evening together? The dull turn in their conversation does not matter, because they are enjoying being around each other... aren't they?

Any for me, is it not the same? am I not really just enjoying the humanity of being around people, of sharing space. Of sharing eyes... yes, eyes is are something I love about this city. The people here are never scared to meet eyes, indeed they seek them out, they invite them, and they shower them with happy human smiles. Old people who have made it their habit still smile like it was the first time, the middle aged smile with confidence and self assurance, the younger ones smile conspiratorially, and young children, whose ignorance gives them liberty all over the world, still smile into the passer's eyes. Even the turtles in this cafe look and smile. hmmmm what lovely beer smiling at me... I smile back and drink it.

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