Monday, 20 June 2011

Day four

Away from my bleak Westway empire [right], I’ve been at countryside festivities where nobody noticed that one of the belly-dancers had a prosthetic leg. And if you’re one of those people who feels a need to google ‘belly dancer prosthetic leg’, welcome to my blog about drawing under the A40.

A pretty girl sits down, eats, smokes and texts.

The girl is Irana and goes back to Spain tomorrow. I spray the drawing with fixative and hand it to her. ‘I love it!’ she cries, sparkling. Look, she’s not telling me it’s a great work of art or anything – she’s just happy.

Buoyed up by the love, I break for hot chocolate from the corner café. A couple of men walk past, talking:
‘Bernard Matthews. Is he dead?’
‘Oh shit.’


My friend Peter wanders along to say hello. He says how wonderful it is to have an excuse to sit and stare. A drunk in shades shuffles up to Peter, nudges him, mumbles, grins. The drunk’s teeth are corroded black chips.

My drive home touches the tectonic plates of sleek London and just-surviving London. It feels as if people are being ground between the plates.

A girl of primary school age with what used to be called flaxen hair, carrying a violin case, walks under her mother’s wing. Another mother, with a baby in a buggy and a small child alongside, is confident in that moment that nothing bad can happen and steps out in front of the car without looking.

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