Wednesday, May 22, 2024


Dawn came surprisingly soon. That is to say, normally I sleep a little late on Wednesdays due to intemperate behaviours the night before -- which really means behaviours by younger and sprightlier people getting squiffy in North Beach, frat boys and twenty-something marketing drones, because I don't drink -- and rise at a leisurely hour for a cup of coffee and a quiet contemplative pipe smoked when the day is already full. But, you know, the bladder.

When I was a young lad the bladder did not weigh so heavily on the mind. It took care of itself, more or less, and I cannot remember it being a pain in the sphincter. Although I do remember taking a leak against the church opposite our house on the market square in Valkenswaard. And one evening at the church in Aalst. Also Veldhoven. Plus the smaller church in Dommelen, several times. Also three different churches in Eindhoven.

This makes sense when you understand that churches in North Brabant do not get built in a wilderness. Most of the bars where young men gather are, in fact, short stumbling distances from churches. They are in the centre of things.

They loom, dark and inviting, almost begging the passerby to pause and think about life.

By the way: Our house opposite the church is now also a bar. So you can't go back, really, but you can have a good time there if you try. There are more bars on the Market Square than before.

It stands to reason that the women's room in almost any bar, cafe, herberg, or restaurant in the Kempen region is quite heavenly, because while the men can wander around outside and find relief near a random building, women cannot do so, and must take their pause in a warm brightly lit clean private area. The men's room is usually a frightful bog.

And if the business is run by Stientje ('Kristine'), a tough old lady who smuggled guns during the war, and butter, tobacco, and gin, afterwards, the women's room will be absolutely sparkling. With lace and pillows. Please do not ask me how I know this.

The diuretic effect of coffee takes between one and two hours to become apparent. Tea can take a while longer, and may manifest itself two or three times over a period of several hours throughout an entire night.

When I come home after work I drink coffee. No problem.
Diuresis happens before I feel somnolent.
Then I sleep like a baby.

I dreamed of church last night.
I am not a religious man.

I had tea.

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