Ever have one of those days where you know that if you stay home you might very likely chuck yourself out from an upstairs window? Well, that about sums up last Sunday. Therefore I decided to go to Camden Town for the afternoon to distract myself and scout out some bargains, despite the fact I hate to shop (though necessity prevails). As a starving writer and a woman who refuses to give in to the moneyed gentlemen she’s met over the years who’ve offered to keep her in high style (though as we all know, there’s no such thing as a free lunch), I’m not in the leagues of Bond Street or Harrods; there are no Prada handbags or expensive designer dresses in my closet. So it’s Camden Town for me, though many of the shops there are still out of my reach! (Let’s get my Amazon Kindle books and short stories selling, alreet?)
The day began in a manner that made me wish I’d stayed home, despite the dire temptation of the upstairs window. My train journey into the city consisted of having to listen to the Essex geezah behind me making and receiving endless calls on his mobile phone, most of which were of him threatening his mate with dire consequences if he didn’t cough up the 450 quid owed him when he got to his house. Okay, fine, it didn’t affect MY life, save for the fact that his language was highly inappropriate at half past eleven in the morning (just as it would have been at half past midnight). Mind you, it seems the majority of men in Essex cannot speak without every other word being an obscenity, most of which are particularly offensive to women. If you’ve ever encountered any Essex males (usually visible in a crowd by their West Ham shirts), I’m sure I need not elaborate.
Things really heated up when the fellow seated across from me (whom it was later revealed was an American tourist to our fair isle) decided to take a photograph of the landscape outside the train window, which apparently was directly in the range of Mr. Geezah’s personage. Well, Mr. Geezah took none too kindly to what he construed as a photo being taken of his fine Essex self, and things began to turn nasty. In caveman-speak, he laid into the fellow, demanding to know if he’d been photographed and why, which escalated into a threat to take the camera and smash it (and, I gather, smash its owner’s face as well). The exchange went on for a good fifteen minutes, in between more phone calls as to the whereabouts of his money. Finally we were left in peace when he exited the train – no doubt to pursue the poor bastard who owed him the 450 quid, as somehow I doubt he was heading off to a late Sunday service.
I eventually made it to Camden Town, which was bustling with people out for a day of posing, shopping, and eating. Is there a recession on? If so, I saw no evidence of it in Londontown. Mind you, I was hard-pressed to actually see any actual English people buying anything – the only ones who seemed to be taking out their wallets were Spaniards, Italians, and Russians. Oh, and me, who by a stroke of luck did manage to snag some bargains, which included haggling a market trader down by 25 quid on a purchase. I’d managed to recruit a friend along to play mule by carrying my bags and preventing me from going psycho in the crowd (I don’t “do” crowds). Happening upon a pub that served Fruli (my favourite strawberry beer) on tap didn’t hurt either. I suppose I got in my friend’s good graces when I naysayed his potential purchase of a rather pricey belt made up of bullets that looked like something from out of a spaghetti western. The thing looked fabulous dangling from a wire, but it quickly lost its appeal when worn. Although his intention was to wear it to heavy metal gigs, I was certain he’d end up being arrested as a suicide bomber before he’d even made it through the door.
I’m now wondering if maybe I should’ve bought the bullet belt myself, and possibly a gun to go along with it. It might come in handy next time I’m on the train…
Entry filed under: Uncategorized. Tags: Amazon Kindle, American tourist, Bond Street, books, Camden Town, Essex, Fruili beer, geezah, Harrods, London, M. S. Valentine, recession, shopping, short stories, trains, West Ham.