It’s Sunday morning. Finally the Sun comes down through the thick personality of Sintra’s (Portugal) cloud. Me and my kid Fausto are finally ready to return to the park and perform our father-to-son lovely rituals. I am home, he’s home, all is groovy. But, in a few minutes we hit the first traffic jam.
Traffic jams, we all left our skin and bones there, but on a Sunday it seems even more costly as you always expect to just drive away, park, and run away from the metallic shell and watch him swing, slide and smile. Unfortunately it seems that every joyful moment in one’s life must be always preceded by some kind of probation. When that quest comes in the shape of a pretence joyful crowd marching up and down the hill, on their bikes, their over-tight athletic suits, things get a bit nasty inside the car with me and Fausto immediately cranking up, waiting in line.
When we are finally diverted from our intended destination by the Police and -by the bless of the Pagan spirits hanging down the cloud as well – we find a parking spot (ticket later in the window shield, I forgot that even on Sunday the monster needs to be fed and no Jesus around to kick the money-lenders from the temple). We naively park there and it’s a long walk up to the park for my kid but he’s resolute and leads on. I have to hold his hand because the streets are swarming with people. There was some bike race and some half-marathon going or whatever going on and it’s chaos painted in yellow and fluorescent. People take all the space, they bump at each other, the bikes are everywhere. In the meanwhile the street artisans sell nothing, people barely notice them or the landscape around. They are just taking the quite fresh air of old Sintra but other than that they could be anywhere else or inside a shopping mall. They line for stupid promos, they stop me to take selfies home even though I am sure some most of them don’t have the slightest idea of who am I, but it’s one more for the collection. My kid guides me around through the maze. His eyes fixed on the park. A bubble of real fresh air that makes us forget the visual pollution around.
Before you put me out as a snob or a misanthrope let me tell you about the looks I get for not being in an over-tight athletic suit to expiate my weekly sins, dragging my meats on a senseless race for a promotional shirt and some yogurt . And no, I can’t ride a bike properly so either I walk or I drive. I am that cold war, baby. Speaking about bikes, I am not overall excited about the new breed of bikers, at least not around the place I live. They certainly rarely go on a straight line (like the law here says they should) and take up most of the road, making it impossible to overcome them and get on with your unhealthy and polluting lifestyle. The other day, a guy just double parked to pick up something really quickly and the cyclist behind him swore at him so loud and vile, something you wouldn’t expect from a free rider on a bike. You kinda do that from the safety of your car.
But that’s the least. The other day I was seeing the Netflix documentary “We’re fucking Twisted Sister”. It was an enjoyable viewing, great, powerful story with the usual sweet and sour and spice of being in such a band. Dee Snider, a rightful suburban guy , just as many of us are, says we always had a problem with “people looking at him with disdain”. Now that’s a word that ringed a bell. English is not my first language as you know. Disdain.
I share that feeling today in this glorious morning with the Sun shining and everyone out in the streets, healthy or unhealthy; vegans or omnivores; cyclists or Airline captains. “God hates us all.” After all when one rides a bike or runs into nothingness, it’s his choice as it is mine to play in the park and being unable to ride a bike or eat from plants only. What makes it right or wrong is the simple question: “Do I do this to feel better; or to feel better than others?”
Aliens, sometimes, exist. And on this beautiful morning it’s me and my son who claim the out of this earth in us.
Picture credit: express.co.uk