Sometimes people disappear from your streetscape. In 2007 I also paid attention to a man who suddenly stopped by on my old blog 'Punt.nl'. Only the title can be found on Google, because Punt.nl no longer exists and my blog about this man no longer.
He was an older man, somewhere in his seventies, but could also be eighty, and walked by my house three times a day to walk his whiskey dog out. I always greeted him when I met him live, and he said, only after some time, to me back. He didn't know me, so he didn't greet. But I kept holding on stiff.
One day he was gone. Suddenly he stopped walking down my street with his little dog. Undoubtedly deceased. I often wondered what happened to the dog, but I had no idea where he lived and no one seemed to know him.
Last year, just before my vacation in September, I missed him. But I had been busy and probably hadn't noticed him. We call him Kees. He introduced himself to me once and gave him his address, but my brain threw it in the garbage bag he always had with him.. He walked by my window, like, ten times a day.. From his house, which was at the end of my street, to the center. He walked on eggs, as we used to call. He rolled off his foot and took off extra on his forefoot. That gives a slightly heaving course. He always had a lot of momentum. I noticed that he had started running a little slower, but still quite a bit.
He always spoke to me. I wasn't always happy about that, because you couldn't have a really good conversation with him. He told me once that he had worked in the tax. And I hoped deep in my heart that he wasn't the one to check my declarations. Until I realized, he might not be sitting behind a desk, but maybe there kept the rooms clean or otherwise work that had nothing to do with taxes.. And that reassured me. Our conversations didn't get much further than my car, or his one he didn't have in a long time, if he hadn't made it up, like his imaginary girlfriend.
“You don't have your Mazda anymore! Well, a good car anyway? I also have a Japanese. A Toyota. Never let yourself stand.”
“But I always see you walking? When do you use your car, then? ”
“Then I'll pick up my girlfriend. She lives in Brabant. She can't drive.”
“Do you have a girlfriend? I never see you with her? ”
“No, we'll stay home. She can't walk so well.”
'Oh, that explains it... '(? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? )
But it also happened, when I met him in the wild, in a place other than my street, that he didn't even recognize me.. I'd say hi to him on my bike, but it didn't “get in.”
I've often wondered what was going on in his head when he walked back and forth all day from his house to the center and back again.
I once asked him why he used to walk with that garbage bag.. He didn't really know himself, I think.. There was also an empty box in that garbage bag. The bag and box always swung on his arm with his floating step. He didn't comb his hair, but I could see that at least he had slept, because at the back of his head he had 'sleeping hair'.
I always wondered what he was doing in the center. Until my neighborhood super closed.
I had to look back at another supermarket and that became the AH towards the center. And there I saw him regularly at the coffee machine. Usually only with his garbage bag and box in it, but also with others.
And now I miss him, like the man with the whiskey dog. After my vacation, I knew for sure. He was gone. He did once indicate that he had undergone tests, because it did not run so well in his body.. He wasn't feeling well.
“You should know, of course, I'm 80 already.”
“Yes, and I'm starting to notice now.”
“Well, you're still walking like a kievit.”
“I feel like I'm getting worse at my age. But that can't be otherwise.”
“I hope there's nothing serious coming out of the investigations, and that you're going to fix up soon. Have a good day and see you next time.”
I couldn't have known I wouldn't see him again a three months later. I suspect he died.
Bye, Mr. Kees from taxes.. I miss your walk down the street!