Random things that remind me of London.

April 15, 2012 § Leave a comment

For some reason, slightly cold and yet sunny Sunday mornings remind me of London (they do have sun in the UK, you guys), much more than rainy days in fact. So I’ve decided to compile a list of other things that remind me of that city which is the true love of my life. (I’ve tried to keep out obvious UK products)

– Tea (well, this one was pretty obvious)

– Subway (first time I had one was there)

– Dumplings and many other types of food that have nothing to do with England, like Dim Sum, Kebabs, Curry.

– Have a real breakfast

– White sheets and white houses

– Jägermeister, Ales, Cider

– People complaining it’s cold when the temperature is around 15ºC. (this is basically Summer, people)

– Orthodox Jews (the first house I lived there was in a street where I was basically the only one not Jewish)

–  Tea Cups (or rather ‘Cuppa’)

– Black cocktail dresses

– Ray Ban Wayfarers

– Hills (I spent a lot of time in Muswell Hill)

– Parks

– Sunday Roast

– Hangovers

– Gingers

– Very big houses with great gardens (aka ‘manors’)

– Comic books

– Small  avocados

– Moldy bread (used to happen a lot, I ate it anyway)

– Oysters

– Braids

– Mustard

– Women with moustaches (I met one as soon as I got to London and she was really rude)

– Supermarket own brand products

– Talking about the weather

– Stand up comedy (well, funny people in general make me think of England)

– Some REALLY bad adverts (video ones), yet the clever visual adverts (like the ones in billboards or magazines) or beautifully designed packages also remind me of London

– Old men with very white hair

– Cheekbones (Matt Smith and Benedict Cumberbatch)

– Men wearing pointed-toe shoes

– Naked women in the newspaper

– CUSTARD, OH GOD I MISS CUSTARD and scones, I miss scones too

– Red bricks

– Banjos

– Men with nice haircuts

– Girls wearing shorts/skirts with a high waist

– Waistcoats (my boss in the pub wore it all the time)

– Scarves

– Puns

– And last, but not least (for now anyway): banter


The Farewell Letter.

April 29, 2011 § 2 Comments

So, this is the end.

I’m sitting here at an internet cafe in Charing Cross writing this blog post, surrounded by drunks in the West End that have been “celebrating” the Royal Wedding (or rather, the bank holiday + Friday) since 10am. Weirdly enough, I can’t really be bothered to actually go out drinking anymore today. It’s my last night in London from where I depart to go back home (in Brazil) tomorrow at 6am after living a little bit more than 2 years, now with a one way ticket.

The journey to London would be a tale by itself, my dream of living in the city since I was 12 years-old and then all the paths and decisions that led me here. However, living in London was probably the most important chapter of my life so far. Sure, it has been only a reasonably young life, but still. London was everything and nothing I expected. London changed me and London made me more sure of who I already was. You could argue that living abroad does that to you. Yes, it does, but London does it more.

I came here like an arrogant Brazilian who hated my country most of the time, who hated people most of the time, with a heartbroken, no plans for the future and at times unsure of what kind of person I was. I’m leaving London as an arrogant Brazilian who knows the faults of her country, but has decided to go back despite those because I believe I can help make it better. I’m leaving London as a person not with hatred of people, but with a passion for stories from whoever they are. I have fixed my heart and dealt with my shit (or at least I think I did). I have loads of plans for the future and I’m more than ever, absolutely sure of who I am.

I owe these changes as much to myself as to the city, to living alone, to having the same job for 2 years, to paying my own bills, to learning how to drink, to learning how to enjoy going out, to learn how to appreciate being by myself. More than that, I owe these changes to the amazing people I’ve met in here. Each and every single person that I came across and became friends with, dated briefly, hated for a little bit, loved for a little bit, worked with, lived with has made an impression on me and being surrounded by the magic that only London has made me absorb that in a way that – as said before – makes this time here the most important of my life so far.

I haven’t had a chance to say goodbye to everyone and I truly hope and believe I will meet them (you, in case you’re reading this – whoever you are) along the way. Either back in London or in Brazil or wherever the world ends up leading us to.

I must thank specially 4 people, more than anyone else: Lucia and Andrea, the 2 Brazilians that showed me London the way they saw it and that was the best gift I could ever hoped for. They thought me how to drink, how to accept that wearing make up was not the worst thing, that being a bit feminine and hugging your friends was not something for the weak. They showed me that friends can be soulmates (because those two were born for each other) and that London has a thousand things to say, to see, to feel, to smell, to taste and to enjoy.
Also, I must thank Elliot, the English boy who thaught me so much about the English culture, the slang, the way of thinking, the way of talking, the way of enjoying a cider in the rare sunshine, having a full English first thing after a night out and the tradition of drinking at least 2 cups of tea a day. Ah, and the “bless” (AWWW, BLESS HIM).
Finally, I must thank Brenda, the amazing American that made me truly confident that being a geek was something to be extremely proud of, that watched so much crap TV with me, introduced me to amazing people, amazing tv shows, amazing movies, amazing books and most of all who was a true friend that was never out of my mind.
Of course, there are more people I must thank, people that maybe don’t even know how amazing they were and how glad I am that I met them even if only a few times. They are American, English, Brazilian, South African, Australian, Irish, etc. They have 100 different names and I would spend too much time writing it all down and would probably forget some.

It saddens me to think of all the places I didn’t get to go (Hampstead Heath! Kew Gardens! Regent’s Park in the Summer!) and the people I didn’t get to meet. I walk around London now and think if I had gone to this party, to that pub, to this bookshop I might have made more friends and learned more about other cultures and heard more interesting stories. It saddens me to think I have no exact idea of when I’ll be back and how the city will look like then. I hope I have left my mark in here and that when I depart, I’ll be missed.

However, it was time to go. I have written a blog post about that somewhere. I have decided things need to not be stale in my life and sadly, they were in London. Due to both my laziness, people leaving, the Home Office, the new laws and a tiny bit of depression. This time in England was amazing and I’m so glad for all the places I got to go and experience, but life is always moving and with it, so will I. There’s so much I could write about this 2 years, but my time is almost up (at the internet cafe) and I have a plane to catch pretty soon.

This is not the last time London will see of me, though. It won’t be the same. I’ll be older, maybe even wiser and my views might change, but one thing will stay the same: my love for London. Therefore, I’ll be back.

PS.: I did promise to write about all the backpacking, which I didn’t. I will do eventually, but as no deaths have been reported on the lack of posts regarding my travels, I will do it on my own pace.

My heart is filled with hope. *loud POP sound*. Oh.

January 4, 2011 § 1 Comment

So, January. New Year. 2011. Changes. Resolutions. Time to return all those Christmas presents you didn’t like. Time to break up with your girlfriend (because doing so before or during holiday season is evil). Time to look up and have new life perspectives! Until December 21, 2012. Then, the world ends and who fucking cares that you’ve decided to stop smoking?

Thing is, every year since 2001, I’ve written my New Year’s resolution list before the beginning of the New Year. I hide it somewhere and only look at it when the year is done and I’m writing my new list. I check what has been done, like you would with a shopping list and I usually copy those (MANY) resolutions that were not accomplished.

There are some that are always there: learn how to play piano, write more often and every day, travel, fall in love (this one disappeared for a couple of years, but hey, LOOK WHO IS BACK). Sometimes I look at it and I forget what I had written in it, when the truth is that I should have actually kept it somewhere visible to remind me of promises made to myself.

Then again, that would imply other people seeing it and sometimes there are very private things in a New Year’s resolution list.

When it comes to the end of the year, the internet is filled with lists of Best this or Worst that of the year, blogs from people saying what they learned that year and what they did or didn’t and their prospects for the following 365 days. Some are fascinating, some are terrible. Some make me sad and some make me thoughtful. Twitter has been surprising in that aspect as matter of fact.

However, it makes me think of how I have no idea of what to write on my resolutions list this year. I don’t think I have ANY projects for 2011 because I have planned the first half of the year already and the rest is very undecided. I’m not even sure I WANT to plan that far ahead.

I used to plan. I used to make BIG plans for my future and I used to be that girl that your parents point and say “ah, see, you should be more like her. She has a great future ahead.”. I’ve heard SO MANY TIMES from people saying that I would become President of Brazil one day.

Then, yes, I got into University with a scholarship (Film Studies). I had a perfect boyfriend. I was going to study abroad as soon as he graduated. I had excellent grades. Half way through my studies, the perfect relationship ended but still graduated as top of my class, with the highest score. I was working in a production company with a lot of prospects and amazing directors. I had decided to move to London and live my dream of being a Londoner and meeting Mr fucking Darcy.

Done. Moved to London. Now, 2 years later, what do I have to show for? A Film Studies degree with high merit that is 2 years old. A job for 1 year and a half in a pub. No relationship or even the promise of a love in the past 3 years. A good grasp of the English language. No career. I’m leaving London because I’ve been defeated by the constant bureaucracy of the Home Office. A couple of really great friends made here. Seeing my sister grow through pictures and having no idea what’s going on with her pre-adolescent mind. Many friends in Brazil have been lost (due to distance, no one died). No prospects of ever becoming President. Going back home with barely any money and moving in with my parents.

I have nothing to show for and maybe because of it is why going back home to start a career seems like the right decision. Maybe it isn’t. I’m aware of that. I’m aware that maybe going back to Brazil will be fucking boring and I’ll regret it forever.

My only resolution for 2011 is having something to show for by the end of it. Or being on the path to do it. People come talk to me online and ask me advice and ask how life is in LONDON! OMG! LONDON! AMAZING! It is. London is absolutely amazing. If you have an EU passport. If you have at least the opportunity to make something of your life instead of working in a pub, that even though is full of great people, is not challenging enough for me. People back home – good friends of mine – keep telling me I should stay here. But really? 2 years is good enough to gain life experience and see new cultures but I don’t want to see my life pass by and see that all the dreams of doing something worthwhile with my time here have flown by because I don’t want to leave London.

Maybe it’s fear of actually starting life. Maybe it’s just an epiphany.
In the end what I wish for me – and for you – in 2011 is that you accomplish EVERYTHING you can. That you use all the potential you have and do something good with it. Something worthwhile.

Happy New Year. May the world not end in 2012. x

A tale, the rest is detail.

December 15, 2010 § Leave a comment

There was a man standing in the middle of Cambridge Circus, right in front of Pizza Hut.
It was peak time (as if it never is in the West End in London) and cars, buses, people, black cabs and cyclists tried to find their way in the middle of the chaos. There was noise from all sides and so many languages could be heard, one could almost think he was in Babel.

This man looks about 50 years-old. He has a longish grey hair, with sideburns in the same colour, but his beard is dark. His skin is slightly tanned, but has a harsh aspect as that of someone who spent sometime working outside under a burning sun.
The man has rough hands, with calluses and scars, particularly one in the centre of both palms. His face also has some scars, he wears a blue bandanna, old and faded like his denim jacket. In his forehead, below the line where the bandanna ends, it’s possible to see some more marks in his skin.

Well, the man is not skinny, he is actually overweight, from years of eating fast foods and drinking beer. Under his denim jacket, he wears a plain black t-shirt, a bit too tight for his body shape. He doesn’t seem to mind, though.

People walk pass him and they don’t pay attention. He’s used to this, sometimes someone will stop and make a funny remark because of his outfit, but he doesn’t care. He has stopped caring a long, long time ago what others think. He has struggled with his sins and with the sins of others and he’s supposed to now be a free man. He’s aware it’s only an illusion, though. He’s free from judgement and from guilt, but no one is free these days.

The man turns his back to the road and stares at the HSBC bank in the corner of Shaftesbury Avenue. He ponders where to go next. The West End annoys him, all those selfish and bored people during the day and all those decaying people in desperate situations at night. He doesn’t mind the tourists, they come and go more often than he can assimilate.

In the back of his denim jacket, who has seen many winters, there are some very faded letters in blue. It’s possible to read “God loves you”, but the y is almost invisible if it’s not looked closely. There’s a patchwork of a big cross involved in fire under the letters. It’s almost black as if it had only been washed by the rain.

So, the man looks up. He looks at the grey sky, the Sun hidden behind the clouds and he smells the air. The West End doesn’t smell good, mind, but he smells the sadness in the air and the loneliness of all those people that walk down the road, hurriedly and having to be somewhere. Those people surrounded by others, surrounded by friends, probably going to the pub later for a couple of pints that will turn out to be 5. Those people who believe that are unsatisfied with silly things and people who need to keep on moving in order to avoid the realization that they are bored and their lives hardly ever have any meaning.

He thinks his time here is over. His time has been over for so many years, he can’t even remember. But he has nowhere to go. Barely anyone believes in him with honesty and those that do are in most shameful shadows of humanity. He doesn’t even know if he exists. Sometimes it seems like it, but it could be all an illusion. The mind can be very tricky. He stares at the sky with his deep brown eyes and he scratches his beard. His eyes have something sad about it, but wise, so wise that they could be said that belonged to an old soul, if one believes in such a thing. Nevertheless, they were eyes that had seen many things, mostly misery and agony.

The man feels the drop of water on his nose. He starts to feel the cold drizzle touching his skin. It feels refreshing. Cold. Wet (it is water, after all). It makes him feel alive. He remembers all the beauty, the joy and the kindness he has seen as well. There’s hope inside humans. There must be. But then again, it could all be an illusion.

He started walking and soon had disappeared among the passing tourists.

On involuntary thoughts.

November 24, 2010 § 1 Comment

There are only a few things about me that I’m actually proud of. One of them is my imagination.
My suspension of disbelief works wonders, thank you very much. Strangely though, I don’t recall ever having an imaginary friend and my mother says that with the amount of books I read, no need for talking with myself (I can always talk with the book).

Anyway, a vivid imagination is not a blessing all the time. For instance, you know how people say that to find out if you are in love with someone, you have to imagine them taking a shit? Well, every time someone says that, I picture every single guy I ever kissed sitting in the toilet. I can’t control, it just happens.
Thankfully, they are not that many and I’m not disgusted easily.

I must say, it doesn’t affect me that much. It could be because my group of friends back home consists mostly of guys or that my longest relationship was with a guy who had little regard for social rules such as holding a fart in front of me (intimacy, right?). Awkward story: when I was very very young, like 4 years old, I was in a supermarket with my Mom and I REALLY REALLY had to go to the bathroom. Safe to say, it doesn’t end pretty.

Another thing I do is that every time I meet a couple, I imagine them having sex. I can’t control it and I know it’s very much a pervert thing to do, but say that to my brain. I don’t mind if it’s a good looking couple, but sadly that’s hardly ever the case.
I just imagine it. It’s funny to see how it works, though. I don’t always imagine them having sex in bed. Sometimes the image that pops in my mind is a rather odd one. Like in a farm or in the kitchen, dressed up or very pure and safe.

I imagine it without any previous knowledge or conceptions of their sexual behaviours or attitudes. I always want to ask about it, but I think it could end up very badly and people usually take it in a weird way.

“So, Julia, these are my cousins, Ana and Ben.”
“Hi Ana. Hi Ben. So, do you guys like outdoors, hum? Doesn’t the sand bother you at all? I always feel like it would get into the worst places.”

I would probably be slapped by someone in there. Hopefully some people would take it jokingly but what if Ben has just slept with Ana’s flatmate and they are going through a crisis? Tough shit. What I’m trying to say is that maybe it’s better to not say anything.

For instance, the other day I was working in the pub. There was this old man, in his 60s or more. Glasses, wool waistcoat, barely any hair left. He was eating alone, because his son was stuck at work or something. (Excuses, excuses. No worries, we all eat alone at some point. No judgements.)

He was rather lovely and very excited about our selection of beers. Whenever I went to his table, he would try to start a conversation, but really there’s only so much I can talk about ales.
The guy decided to order a roast gammon. I ordered it, it came up, he ate it all. When I went to clear his plate, he tried to strike up another conversation. People love to start conversations when you are holding plates and glasses.

I hoping it wouldn’t be about ales again.
“This was lovely”, he said, pointing at the now empty plate.
Relief. Food. I can cover at least 15 seconds of conversation about it.
“Yes, yes. Quite lovely, isn’t it? I had it for lunch.” I replied, still holding on to the plate. It’s not heavy, don’t worry.
“YES! YES! Absolutely.” he said, “don’t tell this to my wife…”
I immediately thought he was going to say something along the lines of “I can’t eat gammon because of my diet”. I smiled and nodded while I waited for him to finish the sentence. He lowered his voice.
“…but it’s almost as good as…” OH SHIT. Is he going to say sex? Please don’t say sex. I don’t want to imagine you in your wool waistcoat having sex.
“almost as good as…” Hold the smile, Julia. Hold the smile. Please don’t say sex. Please don’t say sex. He doesn’t finish the bloody sentence. It’s too late, I’m picturing already. I don’t know his wife, but she looks about 40 in my head and they are having sex in the kitchen.
He smiles. I’m shaking with the weight of the plate. He doesn’t finish the sentence. He MUST be playing with my head!
“Don’t tell her, but it’s almost as good as…” WHO SAYS THAT THREE TIMES? “…at home.” He finished it! At home! Of course it was at home.

Oh, now I’m imagining them having sex all over the house! No. No. No. Say something. He’s waiting for a reply. I smile. Panic. I look both sides, is there anyone calling me? No. Help is not coming. I smile even wider. My face looks like of the Cheshire cat.

I realise he’s talking about his wife’s cooking. Ah, yes. Why would it be sex? I nod wisely.
“Ah, don’t worry! I won’t tell her.” I say, as if we were accomplices. I would wink, but I’m scared he might think I’m flirting with him.
I turn my body towards the bar. He smiles. I leave, but not before I imagine him and his wife engaged in a wild sex in the kitchen. She’s wearing an apron and preparing roast gammon.

A girl travels. (a bit of background)

November 20, 2010 § Leave a comment

My Mom didn’t raise me to be a good wife, or a great entrepreneur. She didn’t even raise me to be a good mother – although, that doesn’t mean she didn’t raise me to be a good person. All in all, my Mom raised me to be a traveller.
Since when I was little, she always encouraged my reading and bought me books and movies. She used to subscribe to National Geographic and she had a huge collection, all piled up in the shack outside the house – because there was no space inside.
I remember going inside that shack and bringing to my room boxes and boxes of National Geographics and spending hours reading it and sometimes only browsing at the pictures. I would learn about travellers that found the South Pole, about children in India, about secret villages in Africa and lost tribes in South America. I loved writing papers about it too, for school and even research things for the pleasure of it (I was always a weird nerdy child).
My family isn’t rich. There was a time when my dad had some money, but we pretty much spent it all building the house and we are now a middle class family. My grandparents are poor (or low-middle class if you want to be a bit more fair) and almost very few of my close uncles and aunts (and there are 8 on my dad’s side and 4 on my mom’s side) went to university. Some didn’t even finish high school. My dad actually never WENT to high school. My mom finished it years later on a night school.
So, saying that, it’s not surprising that not many people have actually travelled abroad. Well, because we are a bit more well off than the rest of the family, we can afford travelling in the summer. Although, because my dad has a great heart and can’t say no to people he loves (which is sort of the way it should be), he’s always lending money to brothers-in-law and sisters and stuff and they rarely pay back. Anyhow, we have our fair share of summer holidays in the beach.
I have one cousin, though. Actually, she’s my mom’s cousin, but details. Well, this cousin of mine, Rosa, she travelled. Aha. She did, a lot. She backpacked around Europe (she in fact taught me the concept of backpacking) and she studied in the US. She went to do a MBA there and was invited to study with a scholarship and all.
She did all that when she was about 20. Her family is a bit richer than mine, but I didn’t know it back then. She was my inspiration. My mom was always telling me about her travels and how she spoked to her about this and that. I saw her very few times in my life and she was about 10 years older than me and lived in a different state, therefore, I never asked many details about her life. I always learned it all from my mom.
Rosa was intelligent. Tall, skinny, tanned (she did live by the beach). She met a guy in the US (a Brazilian, as well, no less) and they got married. She moved there, to study and live with him. When that happened, I was about 14 years-old. I had my plans already of going to live abroad, mainly fed by my passion for Sherlock Holmes and England (more of that later). I had plans to go to high school in the US and get a scholarship and live there. I was the best student in my English class and was already teaching my classmates.
I remember exactly a day, it was a Sunday. We were all having lunch at my grandparents house. A lazy day, with a bit of sun. My aunts were all there, my mom’s sisters. We were talking about the latest family gossip. You know, the uncle that has financial problems, the cousin that has cancer, the nephew that went to jail. All those cheerful subjects. Then, my aunt asked my mom about Rosa and her marriage. My mom replied something, saying they were moving to the US very soon.
“I’m going to do that one day”, I said, lifting my eyes from the book I was reading.
“Do what?”, my aunt said.
“Get a scholarship from an American university and study there.”, I replied.
My mom smiled in satisfaction.
My aunt went on about the difficulties and my English classes, I answered all the questions very enthusiastically, as I always did when it came to that subject.
My grandpa suddenly looked at my mom and said, “if you don’t look after that one”, and pointed at me, “she’s going to become just like Rosa.” Now, let me tell you something about my grandpa. He’s a lovely man, very fond with his family, even if a bit morbid sometimes. However, he’s old (as all grandpas are when you are 14) and he’s a chauvinist. Maybe as a defence mechanism, since he had a wife and 5 daughters in the house, or maybe just because back when he grew up, women didn’t get much chance to be anything but housewives.
So, he said that to my mom. In a very disapproving tone, I must say. Not trying to harm me, just, you know, giving some of his wisdom in raising children. My mom looked up at him and gave him a half smile, looked at me and said, simply “that’s exactly how I’m raising her to be.” and just continued knitting the scarf in her hands.
See, even though my mom and I don’t have the warmest of relationships and she sometimes pisses me off, you can’t say she’s not something.
My mom is a force of nature. She said once that I have a “strong personality”, which according to her, means “you’re difficult to deal with”. I absolutely refuted such an accusation and got offended, since I’m very calm and never get into fights. She looked at me and I was actually angry and raising my voice. “See,” she said, “you are just proving my point. You are too strong-minded”. I replied that she was not one to say so, because she’s as well. To which she replied “Like mother, like daughter.”

Tales from the Pub

November 16, 2010 § 1 Comment

As you may know, I work in a pub in London, in the city. Needless to say, the area itself attracts a lot of wealthy (and wankery) bankers. Despite the odd arrogant prick, it’s a pretty reasonable public and because the building is so old, it’s full of tourists.

Well, any person that has ever worked with customer service or in direct contact with public all the time knows that for every really nice customer you get 10 assholes. It’s sad, but true. In the pub, we named them “Sunday customers”. Tell you what: Sundays are weird days. Sundays attract the weirdest type of people to that place. I don’t know if it’s because it’s such a business area that if you are around that area on a weekend, you have to be odd. More and more lately, and specially during Christmas time, these “Sunday customers” appear during the week. They are those difficult customers (I’m not talking about asking for things, because it’s a restaurant, of course you need some things), those that seem to want to make your life difficult, specially when it’s busy. If I’m talking with another customer, don’t come shouting asking for another bottle of wine. Most waitresses/waiters are quite aware and are not as dumb as we look.

There are the Sunday regulars as well. They are different than the regular regular ones. The week regular ones are those business men from next door or down the road. They come, they drink, they go back to the office, they come back, they drink, they have dinner sometimes with clients. Usually they don’t know your name, but they are nice and I don’t know their names either. Unless my boss mentions it and introduces me, but most likely, I’ll forget your name. It just happens. I’ll forget your face after the first time I see you, unless you came back the next day (or you are really bloody gorgeous). In my case, I deal with usually more than 50 customers a day, 5 days a week. More on Fridays. It’s quite a lot of people to remember every single face. I’ll probably remember what you drank, though. That’s just easier. 2 double gin and tonics, a lager and any bitter you have. Deal. Come back and ask the same again, I’ll probably remember the order. Not your face, though.

We have this guy, who comes on weekends usually. He’s about 50 years old. Skinny, glasses. He has this absent smile, a bit spaced, you could say. I’ve seen him pay for a meal only once. People just pay for him. It’s hilarious. I thought that maybe he’s a professional con man, but who knows. He comes and sits down in the front, grabs a newspaper (usually Financial Times) and starts to chat with whoever is in the bar, asking for suggestions. He orders starter and main and ALWAYS asks for a 15min interval. Then, he starts to freak out over the napkins. He uses around 4 sometimes. Trying to protect his clothes and his body from any dirt from the food. He goes mad when the cutlery touches the table and shouts asking for more napkins. I fear telling him that the newspaper which his hands were touching minutes ago is probably way dirtier than the table.
So, he sits there and he always strikes up conversation with the table next to him. Always. People seem very annoyed at first. Or amused. He tells tales about his life, which I never had the time to actually listen to. But people start buying him wine, sometimes desserts and sometimes they just pay for the whole bill. The only time I saw him pay, was because the table next to him was one of the girls that works in the pub, so, she didn’t really had any interest in talking to him.

So, anyway this day he had to pay for the bill, he got up and said bye. He looked at my colleague and with this random and very absent smile, said , ‘I’ve lost my wife’ and walked away. I heard it and looked at her, completely baffled at that situation. Did I hear that right? And then the other customers in the bar looked at me, with puzzled faces probably similar to mine. It came to my mind Adrian Monk, from the TV show, who has OCD (which this guy clearly has) and lost his wife, going a bit (very) lost after it.

It makes me think how weird is it that these people are part of my life and I’m sort of part of theirs as well. When I leave, will they remember me? Will they ask where did I go? If I’m coming back? When I leave, will I think of them at all? Most customers will just come and go and I’ll probably not remember them after a couple of months, but some are pretty memorable.

There’s this American guy, who had a lamb pie in the first time he went there and everything I suggested, he loved it. He came back week after week with different people and he would introduce me to these people and say I was the best waitress ever and that was the only reason he actually went there (plus the pie is amazing). I haven’t seen him in a while, but he has brought his wife already and his mother-in-law. He introduces me and praises me to his friends. It’s actually quite interesting, because from several conversations we’ve had, he has this very accurate opinions about my personality. Sometimes, he even makes me realise things I never noticed before. He’s the sweetest guy and every time he goes to the pub, I sit down and talk to him for half an hour. It’s this kind of thing that compensates for all the shit that working with public does to you. Plus, the standing around for hours, the pain in my legs, the dry hands from working in the bar and the rude drunk customers who go WAY beyond the line.

Today we had a couple making out. It happens quite often, specially because it’s a very cosy pub, with candles and some tables which are more private. There was this couple once who was making out in one of those tables. The girl walked towards the toilet and you could see that her stockings were halfway through her leg on the right side. Honestly, people. I know that sometimes you are horny and when you are in the honeymoon phase of the relationship, you do want to spend the whole time making out, but really? REALLY? It’s a pub. There are people sitting next to you. Even if there wasn’t anyone, there’s still the staff. US. Hey, most time people forget about the waitress anyway, but really? After we are closed, everyone else is gone, the lights are on, the music is off, the chairs are up, we are sweeping the floor and you still don’t realise that it’s time to fucking leave? Get a room. We are not invisible and unaware and I definitely don’t want to see people making out in front of me while I’m doing my job. If I did, I would be working with prostitution and making much more money.

I don’t know where I’m going with this post. I just think it’s something curious to say.

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