traduction anglaise Christine Béthune en fin d’article
Mais en fait Martine, elle ne veut pas quitter son bar et sa maison. Elle y est bien. Et moi aussi j’y étais bien de ce bistrot où l’on peut encore se parler.
AT MARTINE AND MALTHIDE’S
This afternoon, I had a drink at Martine and Joël’s café, the ‘’Saint-Laurent’’. I spent two little hours with the owner Martine and her grand-daughter, Mathilde. I say only two little hours, because they seemed too short to me.
What a woman Martine is! She has been working in her bar for 28 years now.
I : Retirement is coming soon?
Martine: I’ll be bored when retired. Except if I find the man that will take me to Miami (smile). Indeed what am I going to do of my dogs If I go?
– eh, fifilles, I will not leave you,
– aldo, I only had one daughter which gave me just one additional retirement year, I should have had 13 children, like my mother …
Martine’s dream is sun but in fact she doesn’t want to let her coffee shop and her house where she feels well and by the fact I was feeling alright too in her coffee shop. In the place, we still have time to talk to one another. Martine is a big fan of Johnny. “When I make coffee, here e is”, pointing to one of the pictures hanging on the walls. As far as she’s concerned, Johnny is a wonderful man and she would have liked to marry him. In fact, in the coffee shop, pictures, books and magazines on Johnny have as much importance as the pictures of her parents and her grand-daughter, Mathilde.
The bar decoration has nothing to envy to the bar of big cities. Because, at Martine’s, all is simple and authentic, welcoming. Postcards received over years, green plants, some tables with wax canvas and a table football and a billiard table, that’s all. The billiard table is for the billiard evenings that Martine organise from time to time, inviting her friends. Young people are asking for these evenings. Martine doesn’t know what she would do without Mathilde.
Martine: when Mathilde is not there, I can’t do anything,
Malthide : I help during those evenings, because people are very dishonest they take advantage of the fact she is alone to not pay.
I: there are not much country cafés left, isn’t-it too difficult, because there are not many customers?
Martine: There is almost nobody coming nowadays, maybe once a week, some customers during the week-end: “before, people came to play the 421 or the “ballote de comptoir” … and so a round of drinks!”
I : since when people don’t come any longer ?
Martine: it started with the Euro. I love the job, but you need to be two.
I : these are your parents in the picture?
Martine: in the picture, it is my mother; she was around 16 years old. She was married three times and had 13 children. When I was a child, I could not understand why dad was with another woman and mum with another man.
At the time, no questions were asked and above all we were not answered. Children did not have right to speak.
Malthide: Today, I am chocked by the kids, they are too rude; It isn’t pretty, in nobody’s mouth. They are not even respecting each other. (And still, Mathilde is only 22).
Mathilde stayed a long time with her grand-mother.
Martine : people said bad beyond my back (whispers)Mathilde: in coffee shops, everyone wants to mix up with your private life.