The pencil mark graduations on the tall press in the kitchen remind me that lots of stuff happens here, where I regularly call for a family meeting and they smile and sit and make up stuff which they know, they so know I like to hear. A table and a sixth unoccupied chair pending an immaculate conception. The kitchen is where it’s at. Food, talk, homework, occasional parties, tears and reconciliation. Shit starts outside but finishes here.
I noticed him recently. Incongruous in his peaked cap on a mountain bike at mid-night. Cycling up the second hill in that old man stiff and leant forward on the handlebars way. Incongruous in that his modern mountain bike had an old man carrier on it, with a brolly sticking out. Strange that it was late and a garish flashing rear red light kept him safe. The rain beat down and the wind was in his face, but he remained stoic and static in his bent forward, not standing up on the pedals hill-climbing way. An old man with an old hat going home to his kitchen full of pencil marks.
I sit and read blogs or write posts and for a moment it’s significant, is real and meaningful and connected. And it is too. The old man doesn’t look like a blogger, doesn’t have that snazzy back pack for his laptop, no, he don’t do blogs. He reads old copy of Con Houlihan in De Valera’s Evening Press.
And day follows night and the graduations elongate. Our nest brittles and frays, they need more and must look elsewhere.