Happy Families In Reading

I love eavesdropping on conversations in cafรฉs. It’s like cutting into a cake; you only see one little bit of the cake (or hear about one little bit if someone’s life) but you make assumptions about the 99.99% you can’t see (hear about) based upon what you do.
I’m in a cafรฉ – Bella Italia – in Reading and there are four conversations taking place around me. Behind me is a 48-year-old guy who is on a first date with a woman who came to Reading because she found a job here. He is explaining all there is to know about Asperger’s syndrome. He’s a sufferer himself (and his sisters suspect that they are). He thinks his mother probably was ( but apparently it can jump a generation as it is a hereditary condition). His date hasn’t yet said a word and I’m thinking she may not give him a chance to explain more on a second one…
Ahead of me is an older woman with a younger man. I know this for definite as she noted earlier that ‘when I was your age…’. They don’t know each other well. Perhaps they are students on the same course? Both are foreigners, southern European I think or perhaps even south American. It’s quite an intense chat about families and the relationships that exist within families. Perhaps they are sociologists at a conference at the university. That’ll do.
The couple and their young child in the corner have just left. She was very good-looking and he wasn’t. He ate with his mouth open whereas she daintily picked at the olives they had ordered with a tooth pick. She didn’t have much to say for herself which means that she’s probably a bit dim and she married the oaf opposite her for reasons of money. He is called Adi by the way. He was wearing a T-shirt with the words ‘Adi does’ (such wit!) on the front. I bet his wife wishes he didn’t but she’ll no doubt put up with him for the foreseeable future.
The last twosome is to my right. A young grandmother and her ten-year-old granddaughter. They are Spanish and they are playing the card game happy families. In a way that’s what Adi & his wife are doing and what the guy on his first date would like to do doing. The South American sociologists are just talking about it…jaques-happy-families-1

Categories: Cycling

4 replies »

  1. You wrote a similar blog post on your EUrovelo 5 trip- a clock face description of the cafe. I loved that one, and enjoyed this one too- hopefully there will be some to look forward to on this trip!

    • Yes, I was trying to emulate my previous ’24 hour eating’ posts written on the way to Brindisi. The first was written on the terrace of a Pizza Hut in Luxembourg, the second in a restaurant in Bolsena just north of Rome.

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