What was he doing, here?
What was the point exactly of this?
Looking at homes, looking inside homes, looking at the way the yellow lighting made them appear warm, comfortable, hospitable even.
Imagining the life that went on inside of them.
Imagining the life that went with the yellow lighting.
Craving for that life.
He knew, of course he knew, that were he to ever pluck up the courage to ring one of their bells, they would never let him in.
The scraggly hair, the torn clothes.
They would not smile and open the door wider to let him in.
Instead they would recoil at the sight of him, and shout.
Sometimes he wondered what it was that ruined it most for him: the acrid stench of his own filth or the smell of the cheap booze.
Still, he wished that some day someone would see through the smell and ask him.
Ask him how exactly he had become that leftover of himself, and what could be done for him to go back to who he once was.
A human being people would look at instead of through.
He had been one of them one day.
He wanted to shout that now.
He wanted to shout to them so they would take him back.
"Hey love, can you spare me some change? Hey love, can you spare me a look? Hey love, can you... talk to me?"
Of course he wouldn't.
One day, maybe, when he felt he couldn't take it anymore.
Until then, he would just look at them.
The yellow lighting.
The yellow lighting that made him want to give up booze right there and then and at the same time long for a bottle of something strong, the pain was so acute.
He couldn't even remember the last time he'd been in one such home, the yellow lighting of course, but also the gardens, the children laughing,
He slowly reached inside his only usable pocket and grabbed the bottle of plonk.