Friday, 29 August 2008

Say "aaaaaaaah"

I think I'm coming down with the dreaded Edinburgh Flu. Ever the contrarian, I've waited till I was back in London to catch it. If it's the Black Scottish Flu, I'm fucked.

Half sprawled on the couch, I'm patiently waiting for the sun to burn through the cloud cover so that I can have a semblance of a summer and maybe even recover. That's not going to happen is it? The sunshine I mean. In my weakened state no one dare tell me but I know, I know... Summer is well and truly over.

Still, I'm going to drag myself out later on, wearing my brand new mini purple tartan kilt and pink dance tights. And high heeled red patent leather shoes. Well, it would be nice to finally start earning a proper living this year! (The tarty toenails are still going strong.)

No need for the doctor, and hold off on the black rimmed cards and crowns of flowers. I'm not dead yet. Just middling. Idling. Limbo-ing.

When all I want to do is to keep going, like a rocket.

High high high into the sky.

Thursday, 28 August 2008

Can you fit me in?

The smell of burnt toast lingers in the flat in spite of all the windows being open. I overdid the toast this afternoon and it set the smoke alarm off and stunned the office boys downstairs who'd gathered on the front doorstep as part of their evacuation procedure. They were even more stunned when I showed up, in my short hot pants and pink cut off t-shirt (and my glasses) to reset the alarm.

Stunned and appreciative I think. Well, they looked pretty enthusiastic (and stared pretty enthusiastically too). Then I had to climb back up the stairs so they got a really good view, rear view that is...

Now I don't dare make another piece of toast.

Anyway, apart from my unscheduled exhibitionistic tendencies nothing of note has occured yet on my full day back in London. Slept in till 7. (I know, but that's sleeping in for me.) Went to an audition near the British Museum.

Dropped into Hummus Bros for lunch. They've put their prices up (apparently the cost of seeds and pulses is going up too - like everything else) and they didn't offer me the usual option of a free hard boiled egg. I didn't feel like a hard boiled egg today but it's the principle of it.

Called to make an hair appointment with Tommy Guns but they couldn't fit me it. Patrick has gone on hols so no haircut until he comes back week after next.


I'm slowly coming back to normal life and back down to earth. (It's all relative. Ask Einstein.) Disjointed, mock-discontent. Not disapproving (other than of Patrick's ill-timed holiday). Nor disengaged. Distemper: never! Disproportionate: always.

Wednesday, 27 August 2008

Heading South of the border

I'm on the train. Ediburgh, Newcastle, York, something else (Peterborough actually), and London KingsCross. Heading South, like the swallows. The carriage is a wonderfully charming amalgam of the regions we're passing through. Thick accents from thickly set ladies and tough looking lads. And smartly dressed elderly ladies on their way down to
London on their bi-annual pilgrimage (maybe The Sales are on?)

The other thing that characterises this train journey is the occasional waft of country smells that temporarily suffuses the carriage: from cow manure (I love it! It makes me think of the country side, and my grandmother's village in Northern Spain and holidays.), to burning leaves (unpleasant), to artificial fertiliser (very unpleasant).

I'm seated at one of those tables for 4 with 2 inscrutable but upper middle class foreigners. Who somehow, insist on speaking heavily accented English to one another. Posh enough to travel first class but relaxed enough to slum it in second. With the thick-set Geordies. And me.

I pointed out the Angel of the North to them, as we left Newcastle. And that has proven to be the extent of our conversation. I mentioned it a wee bit early so we had a few minutes of uncomfortable – almost reproachful – silence as we cranned our necks expectantly waiting for it to appear. I kept thinking "Maybe we've passed it already…" I don't know what they thought – as I said, they're rather unscrutable – but I could feel the impatience gnawing. But then we saw it! The Angel of the North.

Still, the most fascinating thing about them is the prodigious quantities and variety of food they have ingested so far. I know it's a four and a half hour journey and I've had a diet coke, a ham and cheese baguette, a punnet of Marks and Spencers strawberries and a kitkat from the train trolley (I know, first chocolate in 6 weeks! I didn't even care that it was half melted and made my fingers sticky.) But they're in a different league altogether. And yet they are so slim! Out of two orange Sainsbury's shopping bag, they've had bars of chocolate, a whole pack of what looks like oblong buns – what the French would call Viennese bread – with chocolate chips, and lately a peach! I think there's more to come. Actually, the husband is now chewing gum.

The BBC weather forecast this morning promised 22 degrees in London this afternoon, but so far the sky's grey mulch has pretty much clung to us. But the wellies are safely packed away in my suitcase. I'm still banking on sunshine.

Like the swallows.