Den Dam

21Jun06

It’s a strange and nice neighbourhood I’m living in. On the one hand hand you have the original inhabitant who are at the edge or sociaty. The lower end that is. Both from belgian as from foreign (read most North-African) origin as from the “higher class of society. Both have their problems and both have their places to go to.

Tonight I went to both places and the funny thing is that both pubs have the same name. One is called “Café Welkom” and the other “Bistro Welkom” which both means “Welcome Pub”. Another nice thing is that they are only a mere 100m away from eachother and are both “brown pubs”.

My first visit was that of the “lower”part of society to watch the footbal -sorry, soccer- game between Holland and Argentinia. Conversations here were mainly about foreigners and the problems of getting back life and clientele back on the square which had been closed for works for about 1 year. The people in the pub? Well, drunk losers who “knew the world” and had been through a lot of stuff. You know… stuff. (or whatever). Because the owner of the pub, an old lady, decided that she was tired and wanted to go home to her old man, I was forced to continue to watch the game in the other pub called Welkom.

Over there time for some other observations. First and for all, the television was not on. (Damn) So I had to ask to turn it on. The 4 people in the pub had no problem with it (1 “business couple” and 1 normal couple) so there we went, watching the rest of the game… Conversations over here: reminders of the old World Championships where Belgium still did a good job (Remember Mexico…) and… foreigners of North-African origin. The people? Well-established businessman, probably hiding for their wives… Pretty much the same out here. Did have some conversations about other things too but still I don’t get why Flemmish people complain soo much. We live in the real Land of The Free, ruled by the big Beer and King Football. Nothing is impossible over here, a 300.000 euro loft next to an 800.000 social building, everybody is united by beer and pubs and everybody always complains…

So next time you hear me complain, tell me about the freedoms I have, the choices I made out of my free will and all the luxury I have, all the experiences I was able to gather thanks to the money I earned, thanks to the trips I was able to make…

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