I do have a bit of a regular routine on the weekend. It's peculiar I imagine. It starts off with waking up without any particular thing in mind really as to what I should do, it being a Saturday and all. That said, I'm up and in the shower like Im on schedule for some meeting or Something. I know that after I get dressed, there is one particular thing I like to do slowly and methodically: Polish my shoes. I like to sit in front the window polishing my shoes. It's a classic feeling and I like it. I'm not sure what it is about leather, it's loyal - it kind of gives back what you put in. My leather shoes are almost like an old friend. Not that I'm sentimental or anything, only that I spend more time on them than most things. They're warm when I put them on and they're done and they look good. I don't usually wear my leather shoes on the weekdays, they only come with me on the weekend. They are tough, strong and adequate. There is no other choice in my mind that they will serve me well today. I like to tighten the laces real tight: I like to feel that my feet are in control, driving each and every step. I leave my flat, I know my feet are heavy - I can feel my boots weighing them down. But, it's a gratifying, solid bump with each step I take down the stairs. Swinging the glass door open and into the world I go. I take the gentle walk from my flat, over Pelham road, into Palmerston road and up I walk as I admire the cute little houses lining the road. I walk passed a building with reflective windows and always look at myself, intrigued each time I see myself. Not too sure if I'm surprised or not. I normally wave at the guys in the Barber shop. They're mostly Armenians who are pretty good guys. Anyway, up the Broadway and it's all the way into Wimbledon proper. This is probably a good time to mention that I've developed or rather become accustomed to a new thing recently. Naturally, I walk with my eyes looking down and forward. I never found it a particularly noteworthy trait. That said, I noticed it the other day. So recently, I've been looking up(hey!), straight in front of me while I walk, sort of in the distance, above or at eye level with most of the people coming towards me in the opposite direction. Three things I noticed. Firstly, you are aware of a whole lot more around you. You feel more in control, for some reason-perhaps because you have more navigational options than before. People pay attention to you. They watch you, as you watch them. I feel sometimes like its a silent admiration for paying attention to where you are walking. Perhaps that's too far. I feel that perhaps that this is really how I should have been commuting all my life, by paying attention. It sounds strange but it's different.

I guess it's because I noticed it, it's had an impact on me. Somewhat like when a saying actually lives up to its meaning and you experience it. There are other benefits to seeing beyond the confines of the 2 odd meters before your feet when you walk but I digress for now. I take the next train to Waterloo, mostly the around 11am train. Their are times, mostly recently that I accompany my 15 minute journey with a large black Americano coffee. I've found that I've come to quite like the raw hot taste of it, I appreciate it more than with sugar or milk. It also gives me energy after my early morning workouts, which is where the trend started.

You can make eye contact on the train with strangers but it's fairly incomfortable. I've always found this. I prefer to watch the outdoors spin past in the windows. But I've also changed my ways. Like my new appreciation of the way in front of me, I've changed the way I take notice of the world around me on the train too. Also generally I suppose too. Details fascinate me now.

Usually, I listen to my music and ignore people. There are a lot of people in London and most don't seem interesting at all. But thats because we don't actually look at all or take enough notice. I like to watch the horizon. Watching in one direction but moving your focus periodically, allows you to see so much without drawing too attention to yourself, as you would if you moved your head in a particular direction to see a particular thing in that direction. When I take the the 7:55 and onward Northern line services on my way to work, I notice shoes, amongst other things , many varieties of shoes and realise that each shoe is as unique as the moment that each owner grasped their shoelaces that morning to tie them and get dressed. Only that you were not there and that all that is here are these tied shoes, tens of them scattered all along the carriage. But on the train, it's peoples faces and clothes and interactions that are fascinating. What's in that lady's bag that she's fidgeting? Who is that person thinking about? Where is he going? Who's daughter is that and who's mother is this? Are those two related? People are questions really. They are all protected with questions and the unknown guards them like medieval armour protects a knight against an enemies sword. Life's like that you know. But if you try, you can solve them. You just need to be interested in the answers.

Comments powered by CComment