The sun has not yet risen completely, it struggles through some pinkish clouds, a colourful backdrop to the silhouette of a cherry blossom tree, now downy and pink. The car door of a 2005 Nissan Micra opens, a black boot with the toe worn away is pulled into the driver’s side, the door slams shut. Engine rumbles. BBC Radio 4 starts, 7:25am with a discussion on whether or not Britain should stay in the European Union.
I don’t have many thoughts on the matter. I know most politicians are arguing their cases based on personal gain. Nobody really cares about what will happen to the rest of us. Are we safer? Are we more susceptible? I’m inclined to stay, mostly because I don’t like massive change. The last time we had such a big change, bombs were being thrown down on London.
Boots walking on the pavement. Sometimes trainers. Sometimes wet, sometimes dry. Sound of ice scraper scraping away frost off the windows of my Nissan Micra. Ice chips flying over the edge of the windscreen, breath clouding as red-cold fingers tap the ice scraper on a red brick wall, and slip it into the car door pocket.
Knocking on a wooden door.
Bags and shoes clattering down a narrow corridor. Two boys clambering into my car, shoving each other as they do.
“Don’t talk to strangers!”
“Have a nice day!”
A blue scarf is wrapped around my neck, a light blue jacket, slightly rumpled, adorns my shoulders. I carry a black backpack, containing my laptop and all my study books.
Into the glass library, hot cup of black coffee swirling, loud tapping on a keyboard.
A cough. Two coughs.
Chatter over books.
Chatter over chips about books.
A pile of books falling on the table, feverish thumbing through the pages. Hours stretched out in the Glass Library on the sofa, the light from the laptop screen heavy illumination in the dimness of the library at midnight.
The frost stops.
I say goodbye to my family who are going to visit my dad for Easter. I didn’t go with them because I am bogged down with assignments.
D and I travel to March, a small town with one high street and a quaint little museum. We have a Subway, buy some books from a charity shop, and drive on to Sutton Bridge. It’s windy and cold and barren, and nobody walks along its narrow streets. Lots of houses are run down and empty, graffiti scrawled on their broken walls. We drive to Hunstanton beach the next morning, and a storm drives us indoors, wet and shivering. We have jacket potatoes and tea. King’s Lynn is empty because it’s Easter Sunday, so we watch Zootropolis in an ancient picture house. The seats are red velvet, and the ceilings are heavily designed, stained glass windows adorn the balcony looking out over the black and white tiled lobby.
The clocks go forward.
The sun shines.
The blossoms open their pretty pink and white petals to embrace the deep blueness of the sky.
I am again sitting in the dark, typing away, twenty two years old and not a day wiser, each click of the clock a loud, muffled thump as the last second of March ticks by.