Hot Sunday



The man who roars above the high-pitched chatter of the crowd, to prove that his enjoyment of the enjoyment is more intense, is always among the clients—him or his brother or cousin or someone with the same ideas about the right way to behave in a public place. The woman who shrills on the same register as the whine of the mosquito is also here, drink in hand, or could be her sister or cousin. Mosquito woman and lion man lead the dance, sprinkling their drinks like pixie dust among the splinters of Sunday calm with their asinine braying. The shrieking laughter of their children, allowed to play their idiotic games with empty cans and plastic bottles while parents drink and bray at one another according to the rules of adult enjoyment, drills into my brain with the precision of a dentist’s drill. Oh death, where is thy sting? Come, sting liberally around here—this enjoyment needs you.


Dust, red pepper hot

stings eyes with sweat-stuck lashes—

spring seems far away.


Published by

Jane Dougherty

I used to do lots of things I didn't much enjoy. Now I am officially a writer. It's what I always wanted to be.

16 thoughts on “Hot Sunday”

  1. Such a recognizable and vivid scene you paint there! And it always seems that it’s when I’m at my most grumpy and least patient (like on a very hot day when I’m trying desperately to relax) that those braying, misbehaving people sit right next to me, imposing themselves on everyone around them. Grr!

    1. There are whole areas devoted to eating and drinking so I don’t see why we should have to tolerate it in our street too, which isn’t in one of the tourist trap areas. I’m just getting totally intolerant of people who show me no respect. Where did I put that AK47?

      1. I was treated to Apéros with my cousin and his wife staying with us the weekend and her insisting that her nephew, girlfriend and small, teething, tired and very very hot baby should join us. The baby didn’t need bongos … the table was just perfect and my drink danced beautifully. Be still my hyperventilating heart and lungs. I’m still recovering. sometimes, just sometimes, babies are better not aired!

      2. I know that sometimes there’s no getting around bringing baby, even when baby hates it. Like supermarket shopping when there’s no one to babysit. But I make no excuses for the couples who want a night out drinking and dancing, and dump the kids in the street to amuse themselves/murder one another. I’m sure your small bit of kin had no choice but to be brought along. Doesn’t mean he/she had to enjoy the experience though.

      3. I felt for the little man’s parents but not for my cousin’s wife (aunt of the father of the child) who had insisted we all meet. It was not at all necessary and was miserable for him and for us. Those hapless people out for a pleasant Sunday evening stroll, sip and then home to sup I felt REALLY sorry for. Hey ho.

  2. I’ve been in hearing shot of the same scene far too often. It those loud bellowing voices and overly shrill laughs that grate my nerves. I prefer the quiet of my neighborhood and even the rat-a-tat-a-tat of the woodpecker who thinks he’s going to find something in my aluminum gutters.

    1. It was a choice to live in the centre of town and have everything to hand and within walking distance. It also means all the leisure stuff is within hailing distance too and that is no fun. I’d take woodpeckers anyday too 🙂

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