Thursday, September 29, 2011

At the alcoholics'/3 - Bangkok, Thailand

Foto di Olgierd Pstrykotwórca
The whole series "At the alcoholics" is dedicated to Jack London, author of "John Barleycorn".

Continued from here.

The following scenes happened on different days and are reported here in random order.

S. keeps on depriving us of the pitiful shows that we had got accustomed to and only orders soft drinks and fruit juices. It must be the advice that the doctor gave him after diagnosing cirrhosis.

One of the few saloon-like characters who don't drink alcohol here is a fat man with a red nose, dull eyes and boozer gait, who orders his bottles of Coke and Fanta with whispers, as if it was an illegal or outrageous act. Which, in a place like this and with a face like his, come to think about it, could also make sense.

Finally, after almost a week spent drinking sweet stuff for kids, S. threw off the mask and resumed his close conversations (sometimes even literally) with his best friend: an American gentleman with dark complexion, a black suit with white embroidery, a cascade of crystal jewels, a small tight hat and spiced fragrances: Mr. Jack Daniels.
We hear a heavy thud, S. is gone. We stand up and search for him. He collapsed, he's lying under the table now, the chair next to him, upside down. Someone asks him to stand up, he is probably trying hard in his mind, but his body doesn't budge. He is not injured: he's just wasted. They help him to his feet but it's not an easy task: it seems that they are hauling a trailer truck out of a river bed by use of powerful windlasses. When he sits in his chair he's got bubble-like eyes, a blank stare, lost in the whirl of lights and shapes that he can see in front of him, and his hands shaking on the plastic table.
When he returns to the globe of distorted reality that is surrounding him he tries to stand up, then walks like a baby gorilla toward the center of the street, does a 360 degree turnaround, sways, brushes against a taxi that stopped in order not to run him over and continues to stagger until a tourist helps him to get back to his seat. A few minutes later he will go through the same procedure all over again.

The constantly drunk woman is sitting at a table, she dozes off, wakes up, mutters, yells at some person unknown even though nobody pays attention to her, then she continues to move her lips without uttering any sound, for various minutes. Finally, defeated and exhausted, she gets back to snore.


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