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Loss V

I fall in love a lot. I travel by train every day. And I people watch. I don’t know whether or not everyone secretly looks at everyone else, or if it’s just me. But I like to look. I do like to watch people. And I don’t mean to, but I do, I do fall in love. It’s the way they close their eyes as the warmth of the sunlight filters through the carriage, or the battered, well loved book I see them secretly smell, or the fact that they keep their laptop in a battered old leather satchel. Last week I fell in love with someone because he had ridiculous shorts on. There was this guy, who did a silent punch in the air when he finished his Sudoku puzzle. And this other one, who just stared, stared into the dark, when all you could really see was the dirt on the dusty windows. I loved him because he didn’t need the time and place where we were to be clear for him to see what he was thinking. I don’t drive. I own a bicycle, but they’re not really up to the long distances are they? So I travel a lot by train. And fall in love daily. I imagine a hundred different futures. And hundred different whispered vows. I don’t think it’s weird. I can’t be the only one. I told a friend once. She laughed a bit but I think she thought I was weird. She asked me why I didn’t talk to any of them, and to be honest, I didn’t know what to say. “Well, I mean they never talk to me do they? And they’d probably think I was weird, wouldn’t they?” The truth was, it had never occurred to me.


Jamie Potter said...

Amen. I love people watching and I love trains. I too don't drive so am very familiar with the rail network. I'm hopelessly romantic when it comes to trains, they captivate me like no other mode of transport, though I can't put my finger on it.

On the shorter journeys I like seeing what other people are doing too and wondering who they are and what they're going to or from (can't help but earwig phone conversations either!) but find laptops and suchlike are encroaching on that free time now :(

As for speaking to people, I think it's maybe an English condition. I have no problem speaking to strangers in foreign tongues on foreign soil but in England it seems a difficult obstacle to overcome. Just last week a French guy sat opposite started chatting to me. Determined to buck the English tradition, I moved next to him and fell into conversation. I began to wish I hadn't when he kept stroking my hair!

Hannah said...

I love trains and train journeys - there's something about just being able to let go and let the landscape move around you. Plus as I don't drive they're my ticket to freedom (aside from my shiny silver bicycle ^^)

I have recently started talking to people wherever possible on trains, and I love it. I helped a guy with a shattered shoulder-blade (skiing apparently) with all his bags and then had a 2 hour conversation about software development, fascinating stuff, and was able to keep my end of the geek-conversation up tolerably. Also met a guy from Michigan travelling around Europe on the trains, he was on a three day journey to his next destination. Put the London to Wolves journey into perspective for me! So yes, I talk to people now, and so far no one has tried to stroke me.