Have Bag, Will Travel
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In the back streets of Valletta we wandered down shabby narrow streets, care worn but with brightly colour-washed buildings with ancient coats of paint which have blotched and been blurred by successive harsh summers resulting in a glorious wash resembling water colours in the rain, everything running, leaking and fusing.
The streets between the narrow streets are like deep gullies made brilliant by vibrant washing lines strung outside windows like bunting as though in anticipation of a parade or a carnival, smelling of washing powder, stretching across the streets dripping indiscriminately and swaying gently backwards and forwards above the secret doorways and back alleys.
I always wonder if they have ‘extra grip’ pegs in Southern Europe because if an unexpected gust of wind blows something off the line then it is surely gone forever.
This is rather like other unanswered questions that trouble me – why women are hopeless at supermarket check-outs, how did the Trojans fall for that Wooden Horse Trick, if moths only come out after dark why do they always fly to the light and just how can I be sure that the little light in the fridge has gone off when I shut the door?
Monday is Washing Day!
Today’s Monday, today’s Monday, Monday is washing day Is everybody happy? You bet your life we are!
Today’s Tuesday, today’s Tuesday, Tuesday is soup Monday is washing day Is everybody happy? You bet your life we are!
Today’s Wednesday, today’s Wednesday, Wednesday is roaster beef. Tuesday is soup Monday is washing day Is everybody happy? You bet your life we are!
Today’s Thursday, today’s Thursday, Thursday is shephard’s pie Wednesday is roaster beef Tuesday is soup Monday is washing day Is everybody happy? You bet your life we are!
Today’s Friday, today’s Friday, Friday is fish Thursday is shephard’s pie Wednesday is roaster beef(etc.) Is everybody happy? You bet your life we are!
Today’s Saturday, today’s Saturday, Saturday’s payday Friday is fish(etc.)
(very gently)Today’s Sunday, today’s Sunday, Sunday is church… (fast)Saturday is payday(etc.) (slow)Is everybody happy? You bet you life we aaaaare!
Marino was clearly not a tourist place but instead a traditional Italian living and working town with shabby narrow streets, care worn but brightly colour- washed buildings with washing lines strung outside windows and across the streets with laundry attached by brightly coloured pegs dripping and flapping above little shops and small bars. In the heat the atmosphere was slow and lazy and no one appeared to be rushing to do anything very much at all. The greatest activity was at the bottom of the hill where there was a small market with a few stalls selling fruit and vegetables where there was a bit of trade but a lot more conversation.