The Morning Commute.
My alarm goes off at 6am. I hate my alarm tone. I turn it off and take a deep breath, anticipating the sheer fatigue to hit me when I wake up. It’s almost painful when I get to my feet.
Bathroom. Toothpaste. Shower.
Contacts. Makeup. Blow dry.
Cup of tea.
Agonising decision over what to wear for a day of discussion on fashion, let by impossibly skinny and stylish women. Constant intimidation of a woman around those who are thinner than her. Knowing how stupid this is.
Breakfast. Preparation of lunch.
Leave the house when the oven clock says 7.25.
iPod battery always flat.
Silent walk to the station. Only wanting music on the days when it is unavailable.
“One return to Deansgate with a rail card please.”
Always surprised by the ticket man stumbling over the order, despite the fact I place it every day.
Grab a metro. Walk down the steps to see the dozens of faces hidden behind the same paper.
Begin to spot the same people at the train station.
Finish the paper during the journey, tuck it into the lap tray. Read my book. Glamorama. Bret Easton Ellis.
Off the train, on to the escalator. Manchester Picadilly. Up to Platform 14.
Check train. Read the magazines in WH Smiths.
Show ticket. Go to the platform.
Deansgate at 8.28.
Walk to work.
Same faces every day. Look forward to the outfits of my regulars. Want to smile. Feel like I know them. Wonder if they feel the same.
Cross the roundabout on the wrong side. Panic when met the other way. Dither over who edges onto the road and who walks on, unscathed.
Reach the building. 109. “Hi it’s Charlotte.”
“come on up.”