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the beer-keepers


A polaroid of the XXXX Brewery, Brisbane

The letters lit up one by one. X. The child clapped. X. She giggled. X. She gasped. X. She was silent. The father looked over and smiled, nodded at the neon Xs. That’s where Daddy works, sweetheart. And where Poppy worked too. Isn’t it beautiful? The child’s eyes were wide. Yes, she said. She shifted forward in her seat and continued to stare out the window. As they headed towards the city, the red letters loomed larger and higher, and she craned her neck to see. Very suddenly, she sat back in her chair and tilted her head sharply. Daddy, she said, what do all the crosses mean? What do they mean, he laughed. Yes, she said, are they for treasure? He laughed once more and squinted his eyes. Yes, he said quietly, I suppose that’s one way to put it.
Again, the child’s eyes were wide. Are you a pirate, she asked. They came to a stop at an intersection and the father leaned sideways, in towards the child. He lowered his voice. Honey, he said, we are the beer-keepers. Me, your poppy, even your poppy’s dad and poppy. We’re the only ones. Really, she said, you keep all the beer? Yes, he continued. It’s a very important, very top secret job. That’s what the Xs are for. The traffic light switched to green and they rolled on. Now, he went on quickly, when we come up to the building I want you to turn and wave at the big man on the wall. He’s going to be your boss too someday.

Find out more about this Hello Sunday jaunt.

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