In England you can buy your milk by the pint, in little jugs exactly like the American gallon size except obviously not gallon-sized because it is a pint (that’s the point) and it fits in the side door of a refrigerator in line with mustard and jam and the pesto jar. I am telling you this because it is one of my favorite things in a small way, and because if I do not blog my Aunty Jules will call my mum and together they will begin to plot the ultimate demise of the turkey feather girl who (admittedly) has lived two months too long at the top of these posts and it is a new year and a new beginning and a new me. Or so the magazines say.
Another one of my favorite things is to walk across bridges and also to watch water move, and it is no secret that I love the Thames even when mostly it is brown and muddied and murk. I like people watching in train stations and reading books on the tube, and the anticipation of reading a book on the tube. I like anywhere to sleep with the windows open and a few nights ago woke to foxes rummaging in the bins outside. They would find good things and sing sad-sounding bird songs to their fox friends and their fox friends would reply from a few streets over to meet in the shadow of the churchyard and circle up to share their good things and laugh.
(There are of course things I don’t like. The water pressure (negligible), the laundry machines (nugatory), Super Target (none), the complete impossibility of customer service (not necessarily Britain’s fault; America seems to stand alone in this regard and that’s fact, not nationalism). I still every single time forget which faucet is what temperature and wash my face with cold water and brush my teeth with hot. Sometimes I wish our oven made more sense.)
Yesterday I met an old friend at church who has just moved here as well and after the service we walked down Exhibition Road and got on the Circle Line and came up out of Westminster station just under the bright face of Big Ben tolling the quarter hour with Boudicca lit up by the Eye behind her and it was just one of those intensely quintessential London moments that constantly knock me off my feet. We crossed over to South Bank and talked about being human and learning to love and also to let go, and in the space between Jubilee Gardens and a saxophonist Tom suddenly turned to me and said “Look at all these people living all these lives!! This is awesome!” And given that I just came back to this blog post long past midnight, I’m going to leave it at that. Hi, 2013. Think I’ll like you a whole lot.