Saturday, December 17, 2005

after a week in bed, finally ventured out. To the British Library. But I thought cycling would be too ambitious, and opted for the Tube.
I've taken the tube so rarely in my three years in London that it still feels like going abroad. Mainly the smell, this very unique underground aroma (each underground has its own smell: the metro is really different). But today I couldn't smell anything, so it didn't really work. It just felt: blinded by florescent lights, alienated (not a single word said in the carriage), sad. And the noise, the high-pitch scream of the train meeting the lines, it makes me so depressed and tired.

Pimlico: the next station is Pimlico. Alight here for the Tate Gallery.
The lady from the announcment system seems to suppose that everybody's a good middle class tourist doing London's sights. And anyway, if you wanted the Tate, you could have gone in Vauxhall, and walk on the Bridge...

Next station is Green Park: change here for the Jubilee and Piccadilly Lines; alight here for Buckingham Palace.

Or maybe you're the Queen, and you need someone to remind you where you get off.

* * *

The BL was almost empty, and very quiet. A notice in the entrance to the reading room declared that from January 2006 pens will be outlawed, and only pencils could be used. Too many people have been making notes in books.

Ah the exhilirating, dramatic life of a phd student. Livind on the Edge.

Coming back, the tube was packed. Started to get suicide bombing premonitions. Tried hard not to look at people suspciusly. Realized that my own wooly hat and shawl and bag make me a likely suspect, and wondered if anybody is going to pull a gun out. Just wanted to get out of there.

Next Station is Vauxhall: alight here for the Fag hill, the Portugese shops, the Paradise Gardens, the Bonnington Cafe, and your very temporary Home.


madame min said...

wow, i dont really know how i stopped here, but i really liked your blog.

I lived in london this year (mar-sept) and i quite know what this feeling in the tube is. and reading your description just made me remember and miss a little the temporary life i had there.

hope the city is treating you well :D

mink said...

thank you. sorry I can't read Portugese, so I can't read yours....