Monday, 28 December 2015

Cross at Brent Cross

I "popped" to Brent Cross this afternoon to buy myself a photo album. I use the term "pop" rather lightly. I staggered there through ghastly traffic and had to enter the car park illegally because all of the other entrances had been coned off.

The shopping centre itself was like something from Dante's Inferno. People were rushing about trying to find bargains, dropping things all over the floor in their rush to leave no stone left unturned. Shops end up looking like fields attacked by locusts. I was elbowed in the side by a woman brandishing a fifty pound note which was actually turned down by the man behind the counter. I would have been horrified on her behalf had she not been an obvious psychopath. Also, she smelled of margarine.

I bought the last album in Paper Chase. I like the albums with big Ivory-coloured pages where you have to glue the pictures in yourself. It feels more respectful to the photographs, somehow. I have been religiously glueing pictures into Paper Chase albums, or their equivalent, since 1991. I have subsequently filled more than thirty and I'm very proud of the collection. One of my great joys in life is watching an old friend leafing through pages which tell the story of another lifetime. When I die, I hope someone will be interested enough to keep the albums together. I think they represent a colourful life in a colourful period of time... I hope that's the case, anyway.

It took forever to get out of Brent Cross. The North Circular was chockablock and there was a prannie on the A1 who nearly ran me off the road.

I've been cold all day. I hate it when it's damp and dank outside. Give me snow and ice any day, but this kind of murky weather is just depressing and makes me want to eat.

I wonder how many people were back at work today? The shocking traffic around London yesterday implied that everyone was heading back to the city for some reason, but in my industry, everything goes incredibly dark during the Chrimbo Limbo. When I worked in corporate films we were expected to take compulsory holiday in the week between Christmas and New Year. It counted as one of our three weeks, which I always thought was a bit dodgy!

I am horrified to see such apocalyptic scenes coming from my beloved York. The Yorkies tend to take flooding in their stride and certain areas of the city centre flood every year, but the arial photographs I looked yesterday imply something a great deal more cataclysmic is happening. I'm tying to work out if either of my student houses are presently under water, and imagined how helpless I'd have felt if I was at home for the Christmas holidays and found out my house was under water.

I'm horrified to learn that the government has cut the budget it intends to spend on flood defences by 8%, and that schemes in York and Leeds have been put on hold.

I don't know... We're happy to pointlessly drop incredibly expensive bombs on Syria, but we can't afford to protect ourselves from flooding. Boo!

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