Monday, November 03, 2008

From Grey to Black in 20 minutes

Somewhere Else, The Rising and Setting of the Sun, 2003, painting by Christopher Stevens, photo from

I wanted to find a photograph that was darker than the previous rain-streaked window from Saturday's post, but instead, my mind on art and the need for more art, I came across my friend Chris's painting - and it seemed apt. 

There was no sun today, clouds like an afterthought after cloudy cups of tea and blowing cobwebs from the bag of compost that lives underneath our kitchen sink. Grey swirls of mist, now turned pitch black. 

This morning I went out to buy some cough medicine and get the rest of the rent money out.

I saw my friend, the wrinkled old guy who's probably not older than 40, sitting on the pavement next to the cashpoint, wearing a a straw hat, brown leather jacket and jeans and strumming his guitar. He gave me a thumbs up and a toothy grin when I said good morning.

"I hardly made anything yesterday," he informed me and I frowned. Yesterday had been a good day, bright blue sky held taut like a sheet by the confidence of an easy-going Sunday. But the shifting seasons, 3pm felt like 7pmp; another later and it was night. 

Shuffling around in my wallet, I only expected to find 2ps. I scooped out 80p and handed it to him. Then I remembered my extraordinary luck - the third time to find money on the street - so I dug out another pound (what I'd found) and gave it to him as well. I remembered that's what I'd decided to do when I'd found it. 

"Check the street for money," I told him. "Especially at night when the pubs kick out."

"Thanks for the tip," my friend said, assuring me he'd give it a go, although I can't imagine it's hardly a new thing for him. 

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