|March 9th 2009
I met a Walloon once. It was
Spring time. He was a
truck driver, he was drunk and he was late for a political meeting. He picked me
off the side of a road, in the afternoon, somewhere near the German
He spoke first to me in German, which I
didn't understand. Then in French, which was a struggle, but with a
little English mixed in I learned he wanted me to drive the truck for him. I
told him I didn't know how to.
Miles later, he parked on the main road
near a traffic light in the center of a very small town. When we got
out we were greeted with cheers and flags.
The meeting included more food than I had
seen in weeks, but when the beer is free, and when the company is good,
and while cheering a rousing speech, food retreats
into an ordinariness best left for tomorrow.
I woke up on his kitchen floor. He didn't know who I was and his
wife threw me out of her house. I could hear
them yelling at each other. Soon he joined me.
He bought me breakfast, he showed
me the road to Oostende, he hugged me and he wished me luck.