Belfast Encounter – Stuart Bailie

He was likely in his fifties. Threads of grey hair coated his chin. His thinly framed black glasses scooted down the bridge of his nose as his eyes glanced up and down from a paper he was holding.

He had bought me a small cup of lemon tea upon my arrival. The tea was flavourful and reminded me of his generosity. As I take a sip, the piping hot liquid burns my tongue. I cringe slightly, turning my head sideways so as not to be noticed.

A quick scan around his office revealed to me that he was passionate about his job. A whiteboard hung on the wall behind him. It was covered in blue, black, and red scrawls of local band names and upcoming music events. CD’s and magazines flooded the floor.  A trash bin carried several empty coffee cups and Cadbury candy wrappers.

I listened intently as he explained the history of Northern Ireland’s punk music scene. He was brimming with information. I was entranced by his many years of experience working as a music journalist and could only aspire to one day be as knowledgable.