Football-gastronomic etude about the Belgian soul
"- What do you think, distinctive features of the real Belgian?
– My dear friend, their whole busy! And they are so different! By some, you can conclude that Belgian is not a Belgian at all, but the Dutchman. Another time it will seem to you that he is German. It happens that you take Belgian for Luxembourg ..
– But you know for sure that the Belgians exist?
– Actually, Belgian is the only living creature in the world that does not exist."
"Belgian is either Flemandes, or Wallon, – further Gaston Durne, who wrote a unique study of the Belgian national nature. – But neither Flemis, nor Wallonov also exists. Flemandes is a resident of Western Flanders, Limburg, Brabant or Antwerp. And all of them – South Dieder. At the same time, it is necessary to take into account that the South Diecers live not only in Belgium, but also in the south of Holland, but there they are called South Diderland Brabantsets, or Limbursts. There are still South Falmands who live in Northern France. Wallon – a resident of Liege or Namura, Boren or Walloon Brabant, Ardennes or Luxembourg. All of them belong to Francophonies, except for French-speaking residents of the eastern cantons of Belgium, who speak German. Understand. "
Most likely, from the incredible patch of a patchwork, which is Belgium, the Belgian soul seemed to me always truly mysterious and not dedicated to any definitions. To comprehend it, it fell unbearable in a hot summer, when the red and sparkled Belgians, as well as no less sparkling and the red guests of the tires poured the famous Belgian beer, were elevated in multi-kilometer traffic jams on all roads leading to the North Sea and with Catholic Maudity inherent vinyli in all mortal sins of the Dutch, French and Germans, from whose territory, in their opinion, the wind, who does not understand the heat, drove into Belgium clouds, of which the rain did not shed. The situation was saved only the World Cup – an event that in Belgium is equal only to the wearing on the throne of the new king and cycling "Tour de France".
Meeting at the airport, a ministerial official, who knows the culture, was not like himself. He was intermittently breathing, he looked at his clock, large droplets of sweat. Throwing my suitcase on the cart, he immediately took into a gallop, so that we and his wife had to persecute him, as if the kidnapper of our property. "He is afraid to be late for a football match – choking, the wife explained. – after half an hour on TV begins".
Look at the match, apparently, they were afraid of many, because cars rushed along the motorway at the limiting speed, the national flags were thrown out of the windows of some. Lyuven city, where we are like participants "Formula 1", squealing the brakes, roused in twenty minutes instead of the plated forty, also a variegh of the Belgian twists, which were literally from each window, – such a patriotic impulse to me, admitted, did not see anywhere and never.
The situation cleared on the go. Today it was not just a match, but a historical match: Belgium – Netherlands. It seems that the issue of life and death. I do not know whether similar passions in Walloon Belgium were boiling, but Flanders was determined once and forever prove "that" – another word for northern relatives that day was not available – that "ash clasa" still knocking in Flemish breasts, and there is nothing to do with Americanized Calvinist Jaddes, tirelessly hinting Flemishs that those they say, the same Dutch, only the second grade.
My official with a grave suitcase squeezed on the medieval screw staircase on the third floor "Houses translator", Where I had to live, shouted: "We are waiting for you to dinner", picked up trying to say something to his wife – and there was.
Over Lärena hung silence. I carefully looked out in the window. Zamingo Monastery Mechanics – Real Medieval Town, Given 15 Back by the Church of the Church Known throughout Europe LEVENSIAN CATOLICAL UNIVERSITY. The university converted the monastery for a hostel for foreign professors, graduate students and rich students and from now on contains it in impeccable order. My "House translator", where every month the Flemish community invites all the world those who translate Flemish literature is also located on the territory of the monastery, located in "Guardian Angel House" XIV century. Wooden beams, preserved since the whole of Europe, the inquisition of the horror on the fires of heretics, with the onset of twilight, will be frightened, frightening translators who are sacred to the fact that these shadows nuns inspect the translations of the Nights for their conformity of the chosen profession.
. Honestly, in school years I was not given to understand what the image of Mayakovsky means "thousand sips screaming zev". When Lyuven suddenly exploded with one extreme cry, the image of the our poet became more accessible to me, – in any case, with the fright I jumped out to the street. The feeling was like in a fantastic film: All the streets are deserted, as if it had happened, and a cry hangs over the city – maybe the walls were recovered? Alone, having met on the way only the same unimunted foreigner, I reached the square of the Aude Markt, in the old days of the former main trading area of Lören, and now completely forced tables from numerous cafes. On the square apple fall really there was nowhere. Apparently, all Lyuven gathered here. Most colors of the National Flag were painted persons, especially "figure skate" girls – nude parts of the body. The owners put each at the entrance to their cafe on TV, the tables were outside, the people were bunted on the lampposts, sat on his lanterns, on the shoulders, the most unlucky, as the heads, jumped behind the crowd, seeking an attachment of the false TV.
Just do not think that the Belgians there are no televisions at home. Belgian without a TV in each room, and preferably in the car, I have not met. Just Belgians, and especially Flemish, are not able to perceive football alone, they need to push the elbow in the side of the neighbor, shouting: "Well, you saw!", Being a beer after a successful passage of your beloved striker, stupid on my feet, explode curses, sing a national anthem, cry bitter in case of lesion, – all this buzz is possible for Flemish only in the team.
Later, I learned that before the start of the football championship in Liewen, it was hardly able to avoid an emergency situation, threatened to break out street fights. The fact is that Burgomaster, taking into account the specifics of the national character, ordered a huge screen on the Square of Fisserkt, so that fellow citizens could get together during the broadcast of football matches. This idea was in the bayonets meeting the owners of the cafe, in a panic attached, which part of the income will pull off the fistrismarkt from them, given under the National Football Football Evening. They promised to declare a strike and agree with the suppliers of beer, so that those for the time of the championship forgot about the existence of the city Lyun. It was impossible to think of this threat to this threat. Burgomaster capitulated and went to the negotiations, as a result of which a compromise decision was developed: the cafe owners were committed to establishing in their establishments on TV and did not swing not to inflate prices, using the nervousness of fans.
Creek, expelled me from home, meant that the Belgians scored a goal in the Dutch gate and led in the score 1: 0. With the same score match and ended.
In the evening, staying on the street was simply dangerous. An acquaintance of the correspondent living in Brussels, then told me that it was not easy to bring him to the city center at the moment when the commentator announced the victory "Red devils" – so called the Belgian team – over "Orange", That you mean by the Dutch. Smoking, a smiling crowd blocked all the streets. His car "With head" She covered the Belgian tricolor, on the skuffing speed he drove blindly in an unknown direction, fearing that from the oversupply of moral satisfaction, the coarse fans will distribute the car as an egg shell. "And I thought that the terrible Italians celebrating the victory in the football match, no one", – he said, having come home alive.
I got the impression that all the subsequent games of the world championship did not have much importance for Flemis. They mournfully, but worthy of experienced defeat "Red devils" from the Germans. But for a long time, their eyes climbed some strange glitter, and they said: "Well, I saw how we were separated by "these"? The same, just know how to count the seren in the sea!". It seems that the Flemish soul, torn by complexes, which for centuries diligently covered its northern neighbors, finally waited for ignition.
The next day, in honor of the victory over the Dutch, the ministerial official invited translators to the restaurant. Scientific experience, I tried to refrain from food in the morning. Flemish hospitality can hardly affect the unprepared organism. In his desire to feed the guest so that he can only make her eyes mindlessly, not understanding how to get out of the table, Flemis is very close to our. In this, they are again opposite to the Dutch lad out on a vase exactly so many cookies, how many people are sitting at the table. I confess: the sinner, but whenever, wanting to arrange Flemish to him, I tell him about how one day before dinner in a wealthy Dutch house, we went to the supermarket, where they scared every meal. She was shuddered, walking around the house with a dinner around the house, which turned out to be absolutely right: the owners treated us a handful of beans with a couple of tiny sausages and colorless tea, called the flower.
In Flanders, a real food cult. If the Dutchman chews on the course of tasteless "Stockfrod" – a long bunch with a salad or a thin piece of cheese, then Flemandes in any free minute strife straightened on "Terrace" – Tables standing near the cafe and eat more. "Terrace" In general, it seems to me a kind of symbol of the Flemish Soul: Here Flamandep shows itself, looks at others, communicates, resting, leads business negotiations, signs contracts, quarrels and put up, raises children – in a word, lives. Restaurant in Flanders is a more respectable modification of the same "Terraces". Here Flemish in their elements: first they study the menu – with such care, as if their life depends on the choice of dish; Then the waiter is asked to ask, as chosen by them, the dish is preparing, who in the restaurant chef and not Dutchman is he by chance. In anticipation of the order, they are voluptuously discussing especially outstanding dishes eaten by them on the life path, sighing hard, because now they are not the times and prepare the people completely learned.
In my past visit to Leuven, the ministerial official drove translators – for the ministerial, of course, the account is in the famous restaurant "De Mol", Shooking all of us with the sophistication and the awesome number of forks and knives on both sides of the plate. The lady who served us could not be called the waitress, she, rather, resembled a widowing duchess or a senator’s wife from an American illustrated magazine. In any case, the menu she filed such a majestic gesture that I felt myself a maid that fell to the Lord’s Ball. During the dinner, I counted 12 changes, then I was knocked out, forgotten by the end of the evening, all foreign languages on which I ever knew how to speak. How through sleep, before me came the calls of the official and his wife to go to the toilet, who surprised me with his idleness. At first, I sluggishly resisted, but then, realizing that it was indeed that the amount of food can be destructive to affect health, I went to the same place – to the obvious pleasure of my guardians, who smoked me together: "Don’t forget to shove the handle!". As you know, the ours have their own pride, but forces to tell them in response: "For whom you take me!" I have no. Opening the door with the inscription "Ladies", I understood why welded breadwinners so diligently recommended me to visit this institution. Instead, sorry, toilet bowl in the center of a fairly large room, the shared silk wallpaper stood. throne. Real throne – with a high back, covered with tapestries with "Breyghelevskiy" Landscapes, armrests were from an inlaid tree, legs were put on the footboard decorated with old tie. A handle with the inscription of Gothic Vseu is really attached to the back "Alarm", What means "anxiety". Naturally, like an inquisitive owl from "Winnie Puha", I jerked over the rope, and a deafening chime rolled around the restaurant. Returning to the table, on the officials of the official and his spouse, I realized that they were happy.
Restaurant where we were invited this time, called "Spanish Brabantz" – on the work of the classic of Flemish literature. A hospitable official introduced us to the owner of the restaurant – an intelligent species of unelcom, in glasses and with a beard, exhausted whether with spiritual boring, or yesterday’s football match. The owner turned out to be a real licission of art history, the author of many books on the history of painting. "He traveled in various countries, – the official told us sympathetically, "the museum walked on the museum, wrote scientific works, then tired and decided to open the restaurant". True Flemish turn of fate: sublime romanticism is bizarre, but very organically gets around in Flemish with incredible gastronomic enthusiasm, – in any case, one does not contradict another.
Scientists’s gusts of the licensee successfully embodied in the cultural names of dishes, the recipes of which he collected for all countries and continents, where, in all likelihood, attended not only museums. I as a representative of our culture were offered pancakes "Pushkin" and dumplings "Mussorgsky". My German colleague – Blood sausage "Dürer", And the Bulgarian translator was not lucky: something called "Cyril and Methodius" Licinity includes in the menu only in winter. Nevertheless, from a sense of professional debt, we preferred Flemish cuisine – exclusively with literary names.
When it was put before each of us – however it would be more consumed – not in a plate, no, but rather, in the pelvis of the national Flemish food, the Bulgarian translator quietly fucked and said: "It’s for a whole month!". The ministerial official laughed pretty and gave a signal to battle.
The first broke, naturally, Bulgarian: she stared at a meek gaze into the wall and stopped responding to questions. Then I. The longest of all the German was held, striving, probably, to prove that the German stomach is much stronger than Flemish. When and he finally, with a glazed glance, he leaned back on the back of the chair, the official whipped his friendly and asked his wife to give him half her portion. We realized that the defeat of the Dutch in the football match was not accidental.