Sunday, July 03, 2011
Postcard from Belfast
Picking up the threads. A new baby arrives into our family - a Wee Girl. Another ginger. The city is green with summer foliage and warm light stretching into a late night. Twilight. We used to walk in it. Now it confuses my Australian oriented clock. It's the marching season - July 12th with Bonfire Night on the 11th. In the lead up we see small fires keeping watch over a bonfire build. Teenagers falling into gang-like groups - blue shirts gathering at one end of a street - green shirts gathering at the other end.A group of young people is walked down our street by nearly as many police officers in body armour - seen home. Two men at the back wear t-shirts that say Community Workers. The emphasis is on prevention. From the maternity wing of the Royal Hospital we hear whistles and drums. Practice marches and real marches can detour the city any time. In Marks and Spencers lingerie department a wee wummin and I do mean wee says: Five pouuuund for a pair of pantttts!! That can't be rightttt. A brother-in-law (I have many) says of someone he knows: He couldn't hammer a nail into a bucket of shite! A girl has ringlets that hang like black puddings. There is so much hairspray it looks like black gloss paint. Her old granny comes behind her feet killin her the false tan on her face an orange traffick light. In a car park a girl holds up a bag full of tubs of yogurt we can't hear what she says exactly but she does that ha hahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh shrieking laugh at her own expense. She is doubled over. Ach god love her it's a wee girl is it isn't that great now (pronounced nai) is a common response. The baby is wee your dinner is wee your drink is wee your glass is wee...it goes like this: Here's your wee drink you ordered; here's your wee dinner; do you want a wee glass for your wee drink?; here's your wee knife and fork; do you want another wee drink?; ach isn't that lovely; so it's a wee girl is it; I'll be back in a wee minute.