East in London
So, now I have found myself in Ilford, Goodmayes. A little place only the people who live there know, which I am glad for since directions, whether they come via a Geordie or Hindi are welcome. Ilford, as more people may know, is on the eastern side of greater London. Not quite the East End, but close enough for a confused South African. So there I am, set out to mail my mother’s Christmas cards which I have postaged with one first class Elizabeth and along with a second class Elizabeth to send it to my second class third world home in the South of Dark Africa. Thanks to my stay in Korea, I have grown accustomed to finding my way amongst city traffic and foreign faces. Also as a South African I know just enough about tangling an inexpensive bag around my body just enough so I can be assured of hanging on to the few south African rands I have brought with me as toilet paper. Off I go, choosing the road with identical, though none-the less quaint London houses from the graffiti splattered alley – memorizing my way and thanking each would-be individual who took the liberty to paint his front door green, blue, black or red. Who knows where I may have ended up otherwise.
Out on the big road I spot Blockbusters video, a Methodist church and a pub. In South Africa one of each shop is enough for the meager needs of my fellow citizens but in London, just as Masan, South Korea there needs be a pub, pharmacy, copier and supermarket on every street corner. In absolutely no time I had walked myself into oblivion. My new stretch jeans sagging worse than my own tightening bottom! I extend this story to allow you comprehension of my very extended trip.
I finally managed to spot a red post-box whether it was the one I was sent to didn’t matter, I couldn’t care if my grandmother had to fly to Dubai to get her Christmas card, they had been sent off. That was that. I was full of accomplishment to the brim, which is something you should never allow yourself to be, since its hard loosing yourself back home with anything filled to the brim with something. I lost my confidence along with many tired hair pins on my long journey home. I crossed many roads and walked through many sections of businesses with the regional names changing every few blocks. Goodmayes tires to Ilford tires to Seven Kings tires and eventually one directional stop later I actually arrived at Seven Kings station. Had it been Korea I would merely take the whatever back to Gooding… But it had not, and so I hurried along the new forked road till I found a helpful police officer who directed my back in the opposite direction. Where the hell was I? It turned out Tesco’s would be my saving grace in more ways than one. So I set off tugging at my pants one more time before entering Tesco’s for refreshment and hope.
Now, as it seems, Tesco’s designer thought it good to design the interior ogf the shop with the same madness as the city planner had done Ilford, so I once more re-inacted my trip trough the dairy soap and toilet cleaner Isles until I had reached the end, the Gooding station, The pub I had breakfast two days before and finally home. Only to realize there wasn’t a lighter in the house to light my cigarettes with, but at the very least, there was tea.
*****disclaimer… I am no longer a smoker. Just sayin’