A container sits on The Antiquer's front verge, filled to the brim with furniture and stuff that has been clogging his house - and, in many respects, his mind - for the past fifteen years. It's being shipped off to be sold and bring The Antiquer in a little of the filthy l.
I was on the porch with The A's friend Tosh, two Irish boys who work for Tosh, and Initials in the Tree who has known Tosh since they were boys in Edinburgh and once had an argument with him over a sandwich. I'm not sure if that's significant, it just sticks in my brain.
Tosh and the Irish boys had spent the day packing the container so they were enjoying many, many well-earned beers. The A had also earned beers but was drinking orange juice nevertheless. Initials (who had previously contributed to the effort) was drinking beer even though he'd come over later in the day merely to wind Tosh up, most successfully. From his perspective this was also a job well done. I was the anomaly. For a start I was drinking wine. Secondly, I hadn't loaded anything into that container. But there was the wine and so there was I. Sometimes things just work out that way.
I suppose I have had to listen to a lot of The Antiquer's angst over owning and disposing of this stuff. Psychological scars may not be as apparent as big muscles but I assure you, they're there.
You may be surprised to know that on a porch containing two Scottish men and two Irish boys, there were four very drunk people exchanging stories. It was a most entertaining evening. Apparently. I didn't have a clue what anyone was saying so the apology to me for the bad language flying about was most polite but completely unnecessary.
You can get the gist of what I mean here.
One message did cross the cultural and language divide to unite us: if The Antiquer goes near another auction house in this or any other lifetime, he's dead to us all.