Yesterday when the late afternoon becomes the early evening I drew the curtains and sat in my beautiful sitting room and flicked through Facebook. Our house is on a relatively busy road and i’ve got used to zoning the traffic noises out but then there was a different noise: it was a like a short crump and then a longer, drawn-out shake. It’s a lorry with a loose load I told myself. But I knew it wasn’t. It was a motorbike and a car. Outside two men directed traffic around the smaller side streets while young army cadets started to make sense of the scene. I gave someone a coat – he was trembling but he wouldn’t come into the house with me. I saw the bike in pieces against a wall and the look of despair on my neighbour’s face.
Later I’m in the supermarket; people are buying wine and mince pies, stocking up on chocolates and tins of biscuits, just in case. Jona Lewie is playing Stop the Cavalry and once again, like every year, I remind myself that it’s not BA Robertson. I tell Mr T that it’s the first time this year that I’ve heard this and so Christmas has started. Most people I know hate the song or, at best, have no view. I like it although it makes me sad. I thought about the person with the motorbike and how one moment he had been on his way home, or off to meet friends, had just finished work or maybe about to start a shift of work. Did he have a partner, children, what about his family? One minute people are getting ready for Christmas and then it’s over.
Live your life now.