Sunday, August 7, 2011

The Belgian Experience

A sneaky peek at goings on next door.
It's 2.30 in the afternoon and, though it may not look it here, these boys are all totally smashed! Steve took the boys for an early morning swim this morning and upon returning at 9.45am was invited over for a drink by our neighbour, Maurice. I looked at my watch and asked, "does he mean a drink drink or a cup of tea?" We guessed he meant beer, it always does with Maurice, so off toddled Steve with a strange grin on his face. The boys and I got on with our day. We made fresh play dough, used chalk on the patio, had races with our bamboo cars, and all the while I could hear Steve and Maurice on the other side of the hedge getting a little louder and the laughter becoming a bit more frequent. At noon, I started a banana bread, forgetting that Steve had finished the eggs yesterday, so I yelled over the hedge to ask for a couple of eggs. Steve staggered in with three eggs and reported that he'd had three beers (and we're talking very big, very strong Belgian beer here) and was going back for more. At about half past 12, Paddy came home, bleary eyed, possibly still a little drunk, having finished his shift in the bar at 4am, following it with a few beers and then a short sleep in someone's flat. I suggested he go join Steve and Maurice, but only if he was up for some more strong beer. He hesitated for about half a second, and then said, "well, I'm up for the Belgian experience" and went off to join them. They proceeded to get louder (and Paddy's french was sounding pretty good) until Steve phoned (!) to slur at me, "defrost some chicken, Maurice is on his own today, but he's very drunk and has to drive to pick up Christiane tonight so we'd better feed him."
At about 1.30 I took round the warm banana bread, realising that if Christiane wasn't there they were probably not eating with their beers. We had a strange drunken Frenglish conversation and I realised that they were not only the beers but there was also an empty bottle of champagne and some other bottle of whisky-like drink. I left them again. At 2.15 I heard loud guffawing and peeked over the hedge to see that Maurice (72 years old) had fallen off his chair and Paddy was helping him up. Then I watched as Steve forced everyone to drink some water. At 2.30, Steve and Paddy manhandled Maurice into his house and put him into his bed.

Ok, it's a few minutes later. Steve and Paddy have just come in and gone straight into the garden for a pee. Here you go... why not?
So now they are recounting the goings on and can't stop laughing. And Paddy has just said, "so... who wants a beer?"

No comments: