Les gens qui ne rient jamais ne sont pas des gens sérieux

Be who you are and say what you mean, those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind

Monday, August 28, 2006

A story for Marek

Two years ago today an English girl was driving a German-registered, French-made car around the Northern, Flemmish area of Belgium. Next to her was a Polish boy, who spoke to her in French, peppering his phrases with the odd English word he remembered.

They stopped along the way to buy little tasty tomatoes, big chunks of mozzarella and a crusty baguette. The lady served them in Dutch and smiled at their attempts to thank her in her language.

Back in the car, the pair drove until they could drive no further, a barrier of water stretching out into the distance. Wasps joined the picnic on the beach and the only way to escape them was to run into the glittering sea, gasp at the cold sharpness of the water, and, taking a deep breath, dive right in.

They didn't know each other well, just well enough to fill the day with sunny laughter.

I still smile at the picture we took that day.

I love our mixed up nationalities and languages that bump and jostle against each other. I love our shared enthusiasm for new places and people. I love the way I've been accepted into your life in Poland.

Happy Birthday Maruś! Many happy returns. Don't worry, you're not that old yet...

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