Monday, 6 October 2008

Early shift

Morning arrives. Not a glimmer of light outside. All is still dark. Not even 5 a.m. yet. People - normal people - slumber, snooze and snore on in a haze of early morning dreams and lingering night farts.

He hauls himself from the warm cocoon of duvet-ish softness and shambles through to the bathroom. The time of year has turned and a definite chill lurks in the air. Shower. Warmth. Can’t leave shower. Cold out there. Must leave shower. Wasteful to stay in shower all day. Wonders if shower door can be opened and towel applied without cold air seeping in. Hmm, apparently not.

Clothes. Maketh the man. T-shirt and jeans it is. Coat or jacket? It’s cold outside. But it’s freakishly early so it’s bound to be cold outside. Might be warmer later. It was warmer yesterday. But it was rainy. If he takes a jacket, will he end up carrying it on the way home? Is this too much of a thought process to be applying to a relatively simple choice? Fleece-y style top, then.

Food. No. Too early for food. Wait til later. Maybe a croissant. Probably a croissant. He’s a creature of habit (not a monk, though. Wait, it is a habit they wear, isn’t it? Yes, and they live in an abbey. Abbey habit. Old advertising slogan. Where does the brain store these things? Too early....)

Car’s here. Please don’t be a talker, please don’t be a talker, please don’t be a talker.... “Good morning”s only. Spot on.

Delay at Blackwall tunnel. Non-English speaking driver driving truck too tall for tunnel. Man in car next to him has to get out and use gestures to convey, “You’re truck’s too big. Go up that ramp there.” This has prompted a gambit to start a conversation within the car. The response he gets is a clixby as defined by Douglas Adams’ Meaning of Liff (politely rude; briskly vague; firmly uninformative), the only response guaranteed to stop a conversation.

Magic FM. Weirdly, a good radio choice for this time of day. 80s cheese – like the modern equivalent of easy listening. “Trying to catch your heart is like trying to catch a star”. That’ll be in his head for the majority of the morning.

The office. Dimmed lights on reception and a semi-conscious security guard. Fourth floor. Lights out. He walks slowly to activate all of the motion sensors. Still dark out.

Back to work. The week off is beginning to fade into the past. Next time, he's taking the early shift week off...

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