In the Brouwerij de Halve Mann, drinking a Straffe Hendrik Trippel

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A woman walks through the garden. She has wonderful hair and loss in her face.

People skim past each other without friction.

A man who is obviously not alone looks nervous that he might look alone.

A massive tank – full of beer I assume – towers over us. Were it to topple it would crush us; were it to split, we would drown.

A couple who look comfortable not talking to each other are lost in their own thoughts. Conversationally, they are economical.

The woman with loss in her face smiles. Everything comes back to her.

The chief waiter sees everything. He has an expansive mastery.

There is a man being casually cruel to his little barking dog. Owning a pet means dominating it. People say their pets are part of the family – but imagine if you treated friends and family this way.

The feminine, pretty waiter builds a pyramid of glasses. They are like chalices. I want to knock his pyramid down.

A family look tired of each other’s company, but they’re ok with that. They just need an energy reboot.

The rain clouds linger, despite their promise they would not.

The wind is up. The fluffy dog is blown like a bush.

People appear up out of the ground as if from a forgotten cave.

A conspiratorial, winking red-head winks. Conspiratorially.

An old man sits by himself eating his lunch and drinking his health-giving beer. He has been coming here for 20 years and always orders the same thing. Since his wife died 12 years ago, it’s the only thing that has kept him alive. He will die soon.

Some people are beautiful, but they don’t know it.

An ambulance team arrive with a stretcher and leave it in the brewery garden, standing among the tables.

I make up a story about a couple that I am not that interested in, because I am worried they will talk to me. They are physically too close to ‘observe’.

People wander past the stretcher, pretending it’s not unusual.

A good-looking young man who doesn’t suit his hair is here.

The garden goes silent as a medic starts to move the stretcher.

A Superdry t-shirt is the classic uniform of the travelling middle aged man. I just don’t understand why.

New lives take over the table next to me. These things are fleeting.

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