While heading in for my train home, I scan my card at the scanner to check in. “Have a good journey”, it tells me. “I’ll decide that for my self, okay?”, I mumble on the inside. Then again, the poor scanner can’t be blamed for it. I decide to try to cheer up my grumpy mood and actually turn it into a good journey. And boy, would it become a good journey…
Upon entering the train, I stumble upon a conversation between a guy in his thirties and a quite cute girl who just might be about 20. However, instead of conversation, it could just as easy be called a monologue. Just the first sentence convinced me to pick a seath within a hearing distance:
“So, i’ve been livin’ on the streets for a while, and you just get a lot of new experiences that way.”
– “Are you on drugs?”, the girl asks
“No, nothing never, I hate drugs and never want to have to do anything. Never. Nothing.”
He looks quite dirty and uncivilized. His hair doesn’t really have a model, he seems to be wearing his shoes for at least a few years non-stop, and don’t even get me started on his jacket. I look down, at my own shoes. Hmmm. They could be cleaned as well. Then again, there are road works in my street which means I have to walk through sand every single day and that’s not very good for leather. Let’s wait for another week, then they should be finished. I’ll also give this guy the benefit of the doubt.
The guy continues. “Like I was saying, I live on the street, and ever since the weedcard they introduced (so only people with Dutch nationality could buy weed in shops), all stupid Jerries (Germans) come to me asking for weed. So, if I only have 1 guilder to spend and afterwards I have 20 guilders to eat from, I just have to do that. I’m only as much as an honest person, get it?”
The cute girl clearly isn’t interested in his story and looks at him if she wants to say “Why the hell are you talking to me?”. She looks quite nice, I must admit. Me gusta, even. Long brown hair, foolish eyes (this is not going to be a Muse reference), just a little longer than me and maybe just a little bit too slim for me. I wonder where she’s from. She looks western-European (aka Dutch) in one way, but in another way she looks different. Oh well, who actually cares. All you care about is reading more about the guy. Isn’t it funny how a dirty tramp in his thirties can be more appealing to you than a 20 year old hot girl? See, the world is not as sexualized as some people claim. Well, I have seen her and even just her heavenly blue eyes would draw my attention. Hoever, at the moment she mainly got my attention because of the conversation she unwillingly ended up in.
She keeps gazing at him with her beforementioned blue eyes. He adds something like “Hmh?”. This is where she seems to realize she can’t procrastinate giving a response for any longer. After doubting for a moment, she starts “But can you just-”
“Off course I can’t get a job!”, he interrupts her. “How the hell could I find a job? To get a job, you need to have a house. And to have a house, you need a job. That’s the visual cycle, don’t you get it?”
Once again she keeps staring at him, no clue on what to say. Luckily for her, they get distracted by the arrival of the train at the station of Nijmegen and the announcement that the train changed it’s final stop location because of a fire somewhere close to the rail track.
“Goddamn, stupid fucking cunts! There’s always something with this fucking stupid fuckety-fucktrain! Wilders (right wing extremist politician) is the one to blame it all on! He nationalized the stupid railway company.”
“Don’t you mean privatized?”, She tries to correct him. “Oh shut up about it, it’s all the same stupid stuff”, he says. “When I lived in Weert he already was a hassle to many of us. I hate him. Idiot. Imagine hanging around outside with your friends, and him showing up, only to call the police on us. Stupid cops. Isn’t this supposed to be a free country? I ain’t even allowed to drink a beer or the cops would come. I’m not doing anything illegal, am I? AM I? Well!?”
Just at the moment where he raised his voice to a level where the whole car could easily hear him (which was not really needed as the whole care seemed to be listening already), he was interrupted by an even louder voice announcing the next station. ‘s Hertogenbosch. “The woods of the Duke”. Actually the name of the city is different, because it’s called Den Bosch, which would be just “The woods”. But then again, our elitist railway company seems to have their own opinions about how cities are named. The lady tries to escape from the conversation by asking the conductor at what time the train was going to arrive Arrive in Tilburg.
After the conductor answered and moved on, he managed to get blamed as well: “Well, you know, the board of directors of these big companies are quite okay, it’s the low level employees who refuse to do anything but sit on their lazy asses. They don’t announce anything, don’t help. Nothing. Well, only if they can give you a fine for not having a ticket. They must keep all the money themselves. Anyway, It’s all about communification. That’s what this stupid company fails at. If only for that to be, you could just as well easier take the bus. Only those stupid bus drivers are haters. Fucking haters. And idiots. Fuckers. And, busses are at least 100 times as expensive as the train is. Fuck off with your stupid economic growth and inflation. Hyper inflation. That’s what it is. Everything keeps getting more and more expensive. But Wilders is the one to blame it all on. I already said that.
At this moment I gave him the label “stereotype left-wing weed addicted hippie with no life because of his own stubbornness and nothing else to blame”. I think it fits quite well. I haven’t been able to find a think about him that doesn’t fit this label.
Suddenly I notice the train is coming to a standstill and till this day it hurts to the very bottom of my soul: Tilburg. Not just my station, but also the girl’s. Shortly I doubt staying in the train for one more station just to figure out what he would say to the next person that were to make the mistake of sitting across him. The girl just left, and I decide to do so too. I hop out of my seat, and walk to the exit of the car. I like the next city. Breda, but not enough to go there for a stupid reason like this. Just when i’m about to reach the door to the exit of the car, I hear the sound of a can of beer opening. I turn my head to see him talking to a 1980’s style cellphone “Bummer. I was this close to banging her. Little bitch had a damn nice rack”.
I leave the train with a big smile and I have to put quite some effort in not bursting out in laughter. On the platform I spot the girl, also laughing and also talking to her (pink) iPhone: “like, oh my god!”. I could write another thousand words about exactly those four words, but I won’t. It would ruin the image about a seemingly beautiful girl you should have by now.
This remarkable train ride happened in 2012. I’ve published the original article in 2013, and in that year I also used altered parts of it for an article on the weather. Don’t ask. This article was translated to English on the 19th of February, 2016.