I come out of Halfords and as soon as I sit behind the wheel the first drop lands on my windshield. A solitary drop, snaking down the glass, presaging a visit from its sisters (and/or brothers). What follows is an onslaught. It takes only a couple of hundred yards before my wipers swing back and forth at full speed.
were little my children learnt the equivalent of the word “snow” in Spanish from
a little made-up song I invented. The rhythm owed more to ad lib than to a lullaby template – if such thing exists – and the
lyrics consisted only of one word: nieve.
“Nieve, nieve, nieve, nieve, nieve.
¡NIEVE, NIEVE! Nieve, nieve, nieve. Were they the same age now I would not
be able to create a tune like that. It has not snowed in London this
God, has it rained!
metallic, azure winter sky has given way to a monochrome, monotonous grey. The white,
fluffy stuff has been replaced by continuous cascades, urban waterfalls without
a precipice from which to fall.
left at the roundabout and drive on. The clouds keep getting milked (by whom? I
don’t know) and the road slowly disappears as it gets swallowed up by the heavy
downpour. My route takes me along the industrial estate. On either side stand
the monuments to our modern life: warehouses where people of different nationalities
and languages are in charge of making our dreams come true. The dreams of quick
service, fast collection and delivery. I turn left at the end of the road and
climb up the hill under which a train seems to have regurgitated its
passengers. Out of the corner of my eye I see the crowd rush outside the station before
realising they will probably need a boat to cross the road. I bet that was not
included in the train fare. The street to my right dips away from the train station. That
is my short cut. I can see, however, that other drivers have had the same idea.
I suddenly think that there is no antonym for short cut when confronted by
traffic. Long cut?
home and welcome the comfort it brings. I know that in other parts of the UK
people will not have the same romantic view of the rain, nor will they sit down
tonight to write a post about it. I consider myself lucky, but I do wonder if someone
somewhere is watching a single, solitary, drop snaking down its windshield.
Photo taken from the Evening Standard website
Next Post: “Sunday Mornings: Coffee, Reflections and Music”, to be published on
Sunday 26th January at 10am (GMT)