Bulgaria

Joy in our little world. A successful migration of our websites yesterday, in a matter of a few nail-biting hours, from an awful hosting service (that shall, in the euphoria of the moment, remain unnamed) to an efficient and altogether up-to-snuff host called SiteGround, who seem to be a crew of attractive Bulgarians in Sofia.

To celebrate we sat on our balcony with a bottle of wine to watch the sun go down, and, as it happened, to enjoy a scene unfolding below us.

One element is always on display at this hour: the spectacle of childless, two-income professional couples, one of whom will be resentfully walking their expensive, neurotic, designer dog, taken out each evening to wee on the border plantings and scurry back inside.

Then last night a gaggle of Canada geese, twenty or thirty of them—with an eye on the same plantings, and the lush, newly-laid sod, already pock-marked with dog piss—waddling across the divided roadway that runs past our building, stopping cars in both directions. Whenever they had just made it over, a dog-walker would appear, with a skittish whippet, an obscenely naked great Dane, a shampooed collie, hopeless animals with no clue about geese or anything else, but nevertheless making the gaggle retreat laboriously back over the road, holding up traffic yet again. When that dog had passed, the geese would try once more. Then another dog. This went on for quite a while. Cars, animals, the middle classes. An infallible formula. A wordless farce as in a Jacques Tati film.

Amusements are thin when you are in retirement, and one guards against the encroachment of the sardonic, but our laughter last night was both cathartic and innocent, embracing the absurdity of things in general, and who can blame us? Our websites, our books, these very blogs, as absurd as the dogs and the resentful walkers and the geese themselves. We are alive, not dead yet, and our creations, these calling cards against the void, are snapping up smartish with the aid of enterprising Bulgarians half way round the world.

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