You pick up a copy of the Metro somewhere around Shoreditch High Street, though you know it will make you angry. You are, however, heading toward your first group meditation sitting since you finished your course in July, so you figure you can handle it.
It is a Thursday.
On the front page, Alan Sugar is threatening to move to China if Jeremy Corbyn ever becomes Prime Minister. You think the same thought millions of others must have thought and happily imagine the hate-filled homunculus slowly disappearing into a sea of suits in rush-hour Beijing. In the paper he prattles, semi-literate, about how Corbyn is bad for business. Fuck business, you mumble. Fuck you too, Sugar, with your luxury flats and your idiotic notions of poverty.
You toss the paper aside with a sneer and catch the eye of an attractive woman sitting opposite. She has ash-blonde hair and Swedish lips. She looks away immediately. You cannot blame her. You wonder if it’s all over, the relationship thing. You downloaded Tindr but you haven’t had the balls to set up a profile yet. What are you going to write? ‘I’m too old for this. I’m too old for you. Cannot cut the mustard. Can still lick the jar. Let me lick your jar.’ You roll your eyes and curse Alan Sugar again. Fucking business.
You get off the train at Dalston Junction and have to run into a pub to use the loo. Upstairs, outside the toilet is a framed photograph of a young woman. The glass in the lopsided frame is smashed to shards and the whole thing is held together with extremely shoddily applied cling film. It is like looking in a mirror. You take a photo.
You make your way to the sitting venue and you meditate with a handful of strangers. It is good. It is powerful stuff. You remember. You make promises to yourself.
On the train on the way home, a 20-something Eastern European woman pretends to be interested in the conversation of a red-faced man who is almost certainly paying for her company. She eats a giant bag of Monster Munch and you watch fascinated as her smile disappears like Sugar under Corbyn every time her face turns away from her probably pretend partner, her business partner. He is maybe a year or two older than you are.
You count your blessings.
You bite the nails on your left hand.
You vow to take life more seriously.
This could be a mistake.