The rain has forced the snails out onto the path. The Jolly Roger still hangs from the scaffolding. The mud came in through the holes in my shoes and turned my feet urchin black. It’s not unusual.
After an evening of chicken and chat, Monterrey and latino talk, midnight and the underground, London drizzle and cobbles was almost unexpected.
Waiting on the platform at Leicester Square for the train to come, and a drunken suit, pink shirt, grabs my hand and begins to twirl me around the platform, asks what my dance would be, if I could dance any, here on the platform, between the yellow line and the commuters and the couples. I decline. He presses my hand to his heart and asks my name. I guess his instead. It’s not Charles and it’s not Jim. He takes my hand, asks my name, asks if I’ve seen the most recent exhibition at the British Museum. Central London has a different class of drunk. He tells me the last exhibition was a disappointment. Not enough artefacts. All in the head apparently.
As he bounds aboard the train, I slip away to the westbound platform. I will be a story by the friends this morning, ‘remember when you started trying to dance with that girl at Leicester Square?’ It will be funny.
I am sober.
I get on the next train. The woman I sit next to brushes her coat down where my sleeve touched hers, looks at me significantly. The carriage is comatose and in limbo. Jaws are slack and we move with the train.