When you go out and walk along the streets you know so well to buy flowers for example or to have a cup of hot coffee and a sandwich in the park; or when you go out to the market to get fresh herbs and vegetables, or you stand in a queue to your favourite artist exhibition, or just go home after work – there will be people around you everywhere, things made by people, and buildings built by them. But we ponder rarely amidst common vanities: the people, who are they? What are they? What do they like? Or don’t.
Usually it’s all the same for us – people are just strangers. They go their own ways, so do we.
But you know, sometimes it is quite amusing to imagine what these people like or don’t. You see, we all have our own universes in our hearts or souls.
For instance, take our new friend Monsieur Lucien Bulle. At first sight, he’s just a grumpy little old man walking slowly with rustling steps, muttering something to himself in a low tone; see how he keeps adjusting his woollen kepi. We follow him and here we are, in a small no-name public garden. Autumn leaves have covered the sand paths and olive-painted benches face each other in a wordless conversation.
Monsieur Bulle gets seated onto one of the benches with much noise, almost flops onto it, so we hear him laugh and settle comfortably. Then he gets a little blue bottle, screws the cap off, and with absolutely serious air starts to stir the liquid inside. We don’t get it from the start until our friend begins to blow out bubbles! Oh, yes! You’ve
got it right, dear Reader! Monsieur Bulle blows huge soap bubbles out! Giant, iridescent in the sun with all colours of the rainbow, weightless soap bubbles. He doesn’t do it in public, he doesn’t put his kepi out to yield some accidental coins ("By no means!" – our Monsieur would say).
He does it for himself. It’s his simple joy. I wish you saw him when his next bubble starts off to the sky! His eyes laugh, a smile lights his face, and he whispers:
"How beautiful you are! Fly my dear, fly! Come up with your pals!"
Yes. It’s incredible.
There is joy, power, courage. Now, the little old man is not that grumpy, and you smile.