Wednesday, 26 May 2010

Men, laughing in the rain

This almost sounds as if it could be the title of a painting, doesn't it?
Well, it is, in a way, a bit like one, as it describes a brief moment in space and time, framed by my thoughts on the situtation while becoming witness to it as I was walking past.
So, if I had an artistic streak in me, maybe instead of writing about the following scene, I'd be painting it right now.

As usual, I was out for a walk during my lunch break today.
It was raining on and off, and I managed to catch a gap in between two showers when I left the office.
Walking past front gardens and houses, I filled my nostrils with the delicious green smell of freshly cut grass - to me, the very smell of summer.
About half way through my break, it started to rain again, and quite heavily, too, so I was glad I had brought my umbrella.

In one of the narrower streets, builders were at work, and half of the road was dug up to make room for new cables or maintenance on the already existing ones.

Next to one of the heavy diggers, three of the men stood together, facing each other, talking and laughing.
All three were dressed in the sturdy type of working clothes roadworkers usually wear here, with strips of reflecting fabric sewn on, shoes with metal caps and so on. They were a bit rough looking, with hands like shovels and arms almost the size of my thighs.

I could not hear what they were talking about, but I heard them laughing. Especially one of them - he was rather on the stocky side, not very tall, and stood there in the middle of the road, bending back and laughing aloud all over his broad, stubbly unshaven face, while he was holding his belly with both hands.
Wondering what they were laughing about, I walked past. Was it a nasty joke on the expense of a colleague not present, or just some good-natured humour shared with friends?
No matter what the reason, at that moment, they were content and enjoying life, that was for sure.
Maybe one of them would go home in the evening and beat his wife; maybe another one was so homesick in this foreign country that it made his stomach burn; and the third one was in serious trouble with the authorities for illegally working on the site - I have no idea, and, frankly, can only care so much.

The whole little incident simply gave me a glimpse on three men, laughing in the rain.

(You can read more such glimpses

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