Thursday, 11 November 2010
We can dance in slow motion
Yesterday was an entire day on the move...in very slow motion. It was one of those days where no matter what you do to try and hurry things, the world can't be hurried and nothing will go any faster. My long journey to London began just before lunch when I arrived at my station only to be told that the train I'd been aiming for was cancelled and the next train running late. I resigned myself to this and got a nice hot cup of tea to placate myself, then went to wait in the icy wind barrelling along the station platform. When the train did arrive, all seemed well at first and then, two stations out the announcement came--severe delays ahead, we'll hopefully be making progress soon.
Then, by the time I arrived, the tube was having delays so I went for the bus. Long queue but I waited patiently and finally managed to get a seat. We were about half a mile down the road when a tall thin elderly man stood up and started shouting at the driver, waving his arms around and generally bitching about everything but most of all, the inadequacy of the seating on the bus. The situation escalated to the point where the driver had to call for help and we waited, stationary...
Finally underway again, the driver mentioned on the loud speaker that there were serious delays due to redirected traffic and the student protest in the city. By this point I was texting friends and trying to get someone to contact my point of origin (I had no phone number for them) to let them know I was now running very unfashionably, and even a bit awkwardly late.
I finally arrived at my appointment, the journey having taken twice the time planned. On the bus back I climbed to the top deck and watched the red taillights strung ahead of us indefinitely like a line of red remembrance poppies and I decided to just chill. Suddenly, the golden leaves on the ground at Green Park looked even more beautiful, the eyes of the man beside me looked even more turquoise, I saw rows upon rows of shiny new guitars in a music shop we passed, a woman with neon purple hair smiling. And on the slow train home, packed and with disputes in the air, I chalked the whole day up to slow motion. I noticed that everyone around me had laptops and ipads and netbooks which meant they were staring at screens instead of looking up and out the window as the train drifted through the orange fire-ball sunset over the Thames, the silhouette of skyscrapers, and as we moved away from the City, planes circling low into the amber light.