Sunday, 16 August 2009

Things that go bump in the daylight

Every now and again the Moroccan lady next door goes a bit loopy. She and her husband have recently returned from a two week holiday in Morocco.
They returned to find that their landlord had removed the rickety, dangerous wooden fence from around their garage roof top terrace, leaving it in a more open plan condition.
Their garage roof was a bit of a nightmare, it was littered with gas canisters, broken plastic chairs, a pair of crutches, large baby doll, old boots, plastic bags, scraps of food, bits of old wood, etc etc. I have never seen her husband do anything except drive his car, sit in the town square, or carry the occasional shopping bag full of groceries.
So, a girl comes back from her hols. All is calm, then her husband goes out. She then starts shouting. I am inside and can hear her vocalising but I ignore it. Banging, dragging and crashing sounds follow gradually seeping into my subconscious. No of course I wasn’t sleeping, I was just … resting my eyes.
The lady is dragging stuff about the garage roof and muttering darkly. She starts picking things up. Going to the front edge of the garage and hurling stuff onto the driveway below. This continues for some time, but due to the delay between pressing the camera shutter and it taking the photo, I only succeeded in getting one action shot. The angle of the shot also hides the amount of stuff thrown out.

Once the roof has been almost cleared, she stomps, or waddles and rolls back into the house. She returns with more items including rugs, which join the growing pile on the drive.
Hmmm I think to myself. I hope her husband doesn’t swing into the drive too fast, or he will crash into that.
The husband returns and stops before hitting the pile. I whizz off to get my camera again, but miss the initial getting out of the car, what the f*** look while the camera gets itself ready.
He stands trying to take it all in.
She comes out of the house onto the garage roof and starts shouting again. Words are exchanged (but not in French) and he reluctantly starts picking stuff up and taking it out onto the pavement, piling it up outside my wall.
A while later, there is more shouting, and a three-seater leather settee appears. Some time later this goes back into the house as negotiations are finalised and the treaty signed.
When I speak to Madame later, she tells me rather gleefully, that the lady is not at all content…
I am happy because they seem to have got the hang of phoning up the council to get the stuff removed, and furthermore the absence of the railings means that the granddaughter and grandson are not outside.
The little boy is a bit of a pest as he just keeps repeating Monsieur, Monsieur if he sees me in the garden. The girl chooses to use any vocabulary and just screams and screeches non-stop for hours at a time whenever she is outside and they never tell her to shut up. Her noises are so piercing that even if I am inside with the windows shut, there is no escape from it. Even Madame finds it too much.

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