Thursday, 18 July 2013

A Country Bumpkin In London

A grizzled old Aqualung of a man with a yellow beard smiles down on me. 

I'd just sat down on a bench in a rose garden, lit a cigar and given myself up to the sun. The second I'd dared to relax he was there, staring down as if I was a curio that had somehow escaped from the British Museum. 

I smoked some. Said nothing. He nodded and smiled as if I had.

Tried walking back to the city. No hope of getting on board one of the soon to be extinct Route Masters. Crowds stood at each bus stop like people gathered around the last lifeboat being lowered from the Titanic.

I kept walking with no idea where I was going. It was a sunny street. Market stalls loaded with silks. Mobile phone vendors and all the weird pointless paraphernalia that goes with them.

I came to a public library about the the size of a small post office. An inscription carved above the window said that some famous scholar I'd never heard of had studied there when he'd written his great masterpiece that I'd never heard of. 

If he was around today he'd probably feel much the same way about me.

I went inside. A man in a charcoal suit with gold-rimmed glasses looked me up and down. 

Made me feel like the country bumpkin I am.

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