Yesterday I waited outside River Island for twenty-five minutes for French Gay to arrive. We were going to an exhibition and naturally he was late. But no matter, I had my iPod and I had people watching.
What a delightful nation of oddities we have become. Young, old, big ones, tall ones, Where is every one going? Where have they been? Fat ones, thin ones, palest Nodic blond to flame ginger to deepest black. Bobs, braids, dreads, side partings, mullets-ironic and not- mohicans, comb overs, feathered, ironed, extensions... I love it!
Grafton Street is heaving. Warring couples stamping along regarding each other the open hostility, weighed down in bags and carpark tickets, others so in love they are almost limpet like, gangs of teenagers tee-heeing and trying to look sophisticated-hard to pull off in a kilt, knee socks and navy jumper. Career women stomping past in grey suits and killer heels, baguette bags jammed under arm pits, gawkey young adults taking photos of each other, tourists no doubt, crimson faced against the moving throng. Armani perfume on the air, Impulse, Dior, Victor and Rolf...Stand still, one more moment, sure I'll take your photo for ya. A Japanese girl with four diamante dots glued to her cheek casts a despairing eye over the window behind me, golly I think, eyeing her effortless yet probably took hours cool, the little Goth Kid would love to look like you.
Men in filthy jeans and ripped t-shirts, tar stained work bags slung over their shoulder mingle with soft handed bank clerks, going for a pint lads while waiting for the traffic to clear? Two ladies step from Weirs, botoxed, plucked, preened, waxed tangerine and blonde, the taller lady's shoes cost more than my first car, probably more than my next car. I covet midly and wait for the next song to come on, eeeee Way Out West, Agare, we're back in the day now!
An old couple, wary, worried about being bumped too hard. She has her arm hooked into his, sweet, here comes the Big Cahuna, he's on his cell, he won't call it a mobile because he had been to America twice, watch glinting, cuffs white, who's he calling, Mistress? Underling? Wife? I try to lip read but the girl beside me lights up a smoke and it drifts into my face. I resist the urge to kick her in the shin. I"m glad I do., she has enough problems. Uggs Boots with a ra-ra skirt? Sheeet sister, you might as well advertise that you read Closer and Collen McCullough is your idol. Nice nail varnish though. Big belts, big belts, big belts, ballet shoes, leggings under skirts, fringes, parachute pants, fur, leather, Tims, shades-although it is growing dark, gel, wax, spray, lip gloss, Touche Eclat, Patrick Smith shoes, Dunnes shirts, moving, thronging, mobile phones everywhere... 'I'm around the corner!' 'Yeah I can see you?'
Newspapers, lilies and sunflowers wrapped in stripped paper, books, earphones, magazines...stuff. Nobody seems empty handed.
I shift my weight. Where is that French Fancy? It doesn't matter, it's Thursday evening and still kind of warm although I wore my new Armand Basi leather jacket, but that's more for show than heat retention.
Dublin is alive, it's alive with people, flush with success, vibrant and bustling. I am part of this fabric, I'm, well slap my thigh and call me Daisy, I'm Irish!
I catch a glimpse of a figure, I can always recognise him from his walk. He bobs and weaves and I know he is tutting and sniping. What the hell is he wearing? Is that a frock coat? Are they aviator boots? kerchief? And why is his biggest and best camera- an ancient and difficult throwback that takes superb photos- dangling from him neck? Ahh, there must be competition coming to the exhibition tonight. I grin. The peacock has flared his tail.
We kiss, mwah, mwah, he's saying something. I remove my earphones. '...fucking beech alwayz ze last minute sheet with 'er. Come on, we are going for a drink, ze Bailey is fuckin' pack-ed. Ooof, we can grab a cocktail in ze feetzzwillim 'otel. Come on!'
He links my arm and we are off, swallowed up by the crowd in an instant.