Tag Archives: rain

Der Man im roten Pulli, or the man in the red jumper

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I saw him again yesterday – der Man im roten Pulli. Actually I heard him before I saw him. I was out for a run, bracing some pretty unforgiving elements, when a high-pitched male singing voice reached me. The words were too battered by the wind and the rain for me to make them out, but their accompanying tune sounded very much like this.

I strained to listen, hoping, oddly I admit, that he was indeed singing “Now the harbour light is calling, this will be our last goodbye, though the carnival is over, I will love you till I die.” But just as we see what we want to see, we hear what we want to hear. And I evidently wanted to hear some sort of melancholy romance come out of this man’s mouth.

That, however, was not what I got. As he levelled with me, he paused to offer me a jolly smile and a line about the weather. “Tough conditions,” he said before jogging on again while crooning fragments of what, it turned out, was not The Seekers, but quite probably a German folk song, into the wet winter air. “Ja-ja-ja- aaaaaaa.” Silence. “Ein A-a-a-a-bend. La-la-la.”

He bounded towards the park exit, taking his red jumper, his singing and his general cheer with him. Although I could no longer see him, he stayed with me for the rest of my run, the happy man who sometimes sings and sometimes dances his way around the jogger’s circuit. He is with me again today. Making me smile.

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