Hipster-Dude in oversized military green jacket, short pony-tail and 2 days worth of stubble approaches harried woman legging it to Zara before closing time.
“Excuse me, do you speak English?” he asks.
Quick once-over. Looks like he’s going to ask her to sign a petition or subscribe to a mobile phone plan. However, there is no propaganda material in his hands. Homeless? Lost?
“Uh.. yes-no-yes”. She hurries away. Whatever he wants, it can’t be good and those high-waisted skinny jeans aren’t going to wait forever.
“Wait, do you speak English?” Tone is becoming insistent.
She stops. Better get this over with. Just the usual expat patter should do (can’t sign up because moving away tomorrow … no bank account … etc.) “Yes”.
“Umm.. I saw you and umm.. I thought you looked quite nice so.. ummm..”
No way. Hipster-Dude is actually trying it on?!
Hipster-Dude notices the confusion. “Uh, don’t beat me OK?” This is so un-slick, it’s actually hilarious.
She chokes back a laugh. “Oh I see…Ha Ha! Thanks, but I’m married.” Thanks?
Hipster-Dude almost faints. Didn’t realize he was propositioning an old woman, apparently. Collects himself admirably and with bravado and says, “Really? Show me your ring”.
Rings are brandished.
“Oh… umm.. well.. Is it a happy marriage?”
What, now he’s a therapist?
“Yes, very happy, thank you.”
She scurries away, not sure whether to be embarrassed, embarrassed for him, or amused at his unusual pluck. NL is not like, say, Italy (where even the cops wiggle their eyebrows at you) – it is quite the opposite, if you catch my drift.