Friday, 17 July 2015

West End

I have no idea what her name was, but I do know she lived in Brixton. In a shoddy flat she shared with three other girls, in a room that overlooked an abandoned pond. She worked in a hostel near Pimlico four days a week. Four nights a week.

And there was nothing she liked better than to take her battered bike out and head towards West End. This happened at night, when the other girls were sleeping and most of London was sleeping, too, and she had those streets all to herself.

She could almost smell them, feel their taste in her mouth. She ogled them like a lewd pervert, circled them, and sometimes, when the lights were on, could even see what was going on inside. Several times she saw things she should never have seen. Still, mostly the windows were dark and she sensed great, inexplicable calm marrying those streets with her anxious heart. 

And then, in the morning, she came back to her place in Brixton. It was barely dawn and the girls were still sleeping. She hid her bike, made herself a weak cup of coffee and went to bed. If there was no work tomorrow, in a hostel in Pimlico, she could sleep till noon.