Wednesday, January 12, 2011
One man and his sock
The last week of August had a funny feel to it. Not very relaxing, not very hot.
There was much to do, I had decorated the lounge and the one of the bedrooms. I had hung curtains in the others. The carpets had been fitted in a couple of rooms and they were going into some others. I decided to pop into town. I got in the car and eased myself off campus, I had worked out the town centre was down the road and left. Traffic was not too bad, I weaved my way into town. After a short distance I discovered the one way system. I circled round looking for some where to park. There were shops and Churches in Loughborough but no parking space. I slowly become more dizzy, was there one there? Nope. There? Nope. How about...? Nope. Oh wait. There it was. An empty bit of curb. I hurriedly looked around, no one else was about to take it so I threw my car into it. I got out and surveyed my situation. I had managed to get a parking space a few minutes walk away from the town centre.
I looked the other way. Ah. I was at the bottom of my road.
I walked into town.
I walked up and down a few streets. There wasn't much in the way of town centre. Three or four streets. There seemed to be about 18 student bars on each of them. There was a Primarks, a small supermarket a fancy dress shop, book shops, somewhere to hire a Dinner Jacket, it was very studenty. Only it was a ghost town. It wasn't exactly like there was an absence of young people, there were the obligatory townies hanging round in bus shelters and street corners. It just felt odd to be in a place that was so studenty without a single student. It was like waking up the morning after some sort of qualification based apocalypse.
“Prime Minister the mystery virus that only attacks people with A-levels is still marauding, we're going to be forced to re-build society without them”
“My Gosh! How are the stocks of Burberry.”
“They're at Critical, Sir.”
“We can't do this without Burberry.”
“We can if you'll authorise the release of the emergency stocks of big gold chains and dangly earrings.”
“Is it that bad?”
“It is, Sir.”
“OK damn it, will do it.”
“As you wish, Sir. We will need Mr Osborn's key codes.”
“He's with someone.”
“All right get her to unchain him”
I wondered up to the magnificent Town Hall. Just down from it there was a fountain given by the Arch deacon to celebrate Loughborough getting running water in the 19th century and there at the end of the street was a very naked very fat man wearing only one sock. His huge but crack alerted me to his presence and so I wondered down to have a look. He sat there motionless. Clearly made of brass. Why on earth was there a statue of a nearly naked fat man in Loughborough? Maybe this was Loughborough's answer to Coventry's Lady Godiva, she's there in their town centre. But she has a horse and this chap had a sock. That and a massive bum crack. What did I all mean? I looked at him there his socked foot proudly held aloft. It was not a statue to celebrate naked people. He was wearing a sock. It couldn't be to celebrate socks he needed another one. Maybe it was to celebrate the fact that even really fat people can still get at least one of their own socks on. I wasn't sure. But at least it gave Loughborough something no one else had. That and someone else's sacked chaplain.
I wondered on, there was a cheesecake shop, a chocolate shop, a shop that seemed only to be selling memorabilia for VW camper vans. It seemed that Loughborough had a character all its own in a way large cities often lacked. I liked it. It was a nice place to live.
I wondered home past the art-deco cinema. It only took me about 20 minutes to reach my front door. I passed two churches a couple of halls of residence and 7 student bars on the way.
I opened my front door and passed outside my house. I looked round I could see Chemistry in the distance. I really hoped I would be happy in this place. I wondered what it would be like living here when it was no longer a Ghost town, whether I would make friends here and why all my day dreams seemed to involve George Osborn being chained to something.
I looked up at the blue sky, it was a brilliant sunny day.
I shut my front door and went to go and get my car.