Saturday, April 07, 2007

Upper Surry Hills on a grey Sunday morning

Belgenny Breakfast
Originally uploaded by daveyll.
Cafe Belgenny 10 am, 25 Feb

There's a faint mist of rain on this warm morning. I walk up Oxford St, greeted by the smell of stale beer wafting from closed nightclub bars and the pavement.

It's a quiet day; perhaps more so as Azure aka Harbour Party is on tonight. The boys are getting their beauty sleep.

I choose Belgenny to breakfast; a small cafe on Campbell St introduced to me by that off-beat conventional Nicholson.

Through the window I can see up to a balcony of an apartment where a late 30's to early 40's man in a white Bonds t-shirt sits reading a newspaper. He's got closely cropped hair - mostly bald - and puffs casually on his cigarette.

Very soon, other men with barbershop -short hair and tight pale t-shirts fill the cafe; most studying papers the papers too.

The smell of bacon intoxicates the room.

Two men in similar white t-shirts, of a similar age, with similar builds (same personal trainer, I think) and similar haircuts (one is silver, the other is still brown) walk in. Their identical grey cargo shorts match their white t's. One, the younger, has a yellow and red striped pattern on his thongs, whilst the other has a plainer design - some sort of yellow on black emblem.

They order identical breakfasts: two skim flat whites and half a banana muffin each. Low-fat, low-carb.

Aside from their similarity, their demeanour is a study in long-term comfort or brittle weariness held together by routine. They hand sections of newspapers to each other, an act well practised over time, which makes me lean towards "long-term comfort".

They're chattier now as the caffeine and sugar kick in. Their presumably calorie deficient diets must leave them on a finely honed edge between alertness and collapse.

Coffee at Belgenny
Originally uploaded by daveyll.
A holiday looks on the cards as cruise ship advertisements are pointed at. The Queen Mary and Elizabeth II are on everyone's minds at the moment.

Their cloneship, albeit inadvertant, would be cute if it weren't for their sullen and grim expressions. The determined uniformity of these two suggests a certain lack of imagination. Or perhaps it speaks of the Industrie-led domination of the Sydney gay-fashion scene. Topman would provide serious compeitition if they opened here. I'm kinda wondering why they haven't already.

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