First up, a brief announcement for the livejournal crowd: I've changed the settings in the crossposter, so now you should be able to leave a comment on the livejournal site, should you so desire. Previously I had it set so you could only comment on my website, mostly because that made my life a touch easier, having all the comments, and therefore the entire conversation, in the one spot. But it occurs to me impermanence and fragmented conversations are the foundations of the internet, and who am I to argue with that?
(Wasn't really all that brief, was it?)
And for those of you thinking the loonies were only out on the streets, think again. There's one in my apartment block.
This morning, after a wacky and hilarious misplacing of my keys, I decided to drive to work rather than run for (and still miss) the tram. So I headed for the back of the apartment block, where the poor filthy beast otherwise known as my car was parked, when all of a sudden —
It is a bright and cheery greeting, but it is also a very loud one. I manage not to stumble in surprise, but it's a close thing.
One of my neighbours is hanging over the balcony, earbuds in his ears, with this look on his face like he hasn't slept in days and he's never appreciated the beauty of the sun before now. His hair is unkempt, his eyes are wide, his grin is brighter than the breaking day.
"DID YOU SEE THE BALLOONS?"
I've reached the car by now, but I pause, because I'm polite like that. Although I pause with the car door open, because I'm late, after all.
"No," I say — mostly because I've not seen any balloons lately (I've been far too busy getting ready for work, which is not a task that normally requires my eyes to be open) and partly because from his manner "the balloons" apparently encompasses something remarkable and I've definitely not seen anything of that nature today.
Exuberant as a puppy who's just spotted his favourite human, he points and cries, "LOOK! THERE!"
There are a couple of hot air balloons hanging low in the sky.
As indeed there are… pretty much every morning.
Somehow I suspect he's never been up before 7am before.