Thursday, November 17, 2005

Commuting capers

Word Count: 4,855

I haven't been a commuter for years now. Last time was when I lived in Birmingham, and even that was only a couple of miles, with guaranteed parking at the other end.

Now I have to drive 12 miles each way, in the same direction as thousands of other lemming-like motorists, from the suburbs into wicked Zone 2 of London. It takes between 50 and 70 minutes if I avoid the worst of the rush hours - though I suspect it could be two hours plus when the winter gets bad.

I don't really enjoy driving, but there's something soothing about this journey: I cross the Thames twice, once on Kingston Bridge, and later over Chiswick Bridge, and first thing in the morning it's a magical view, all silver and pink shimmery reflections. There's a short stretch of the drive that's like an enchanted forest, and soon I hope to work out the route that takes me through Richmond Park. It's harder to see the merit once the landscape turns urban, but I am nice and warm in my little car, with Radio 4 voices telling me about environmental damage, and the Thought for the Day. I am also using the journey to think about the motivations of my new characters, maybe I could invest in a little voice recorder as I have a terrible memory and some insight gained on the Hammersmith flyover could be lost to posterity by the time I reach White City.

It IS really tiring, to begin with. I get back to boyf's flat wanting to go straight to bed, but I am sure I will get used to it before long. The next step is beginning my house-hunt again, something I am almost excited about, because the right place MUST be out there somewhere. And in the meantime, the cat is settling down to riverside life.

Lovely Link of the Day:
Here's a gorgeous photo of swans on the Thames.


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