The Blonde is back in town. After a two-year, caffeine-soaked, Caramac-stoked commuting craic, I have surrendered to the basement embrace of a tiny Holbornian womb, replete with a forty three year old chain-smoking chav with a Michael Jackson obsession and a seven month old Alsatian called Snatch. Natch.
There is something to be said for the purgatorial hours of solo train time; that dribbling, scribbling, daydreaming brain time; that tunnel-topped freedom from the tyranny of 3G. I already mourn the man at the station who looks like Mr Micawber and opens his morning orange with his teeth. And I will always, deep down, belong lost and dirty fingernailed in some damp and distant field.
But then I walk through London, rawly resident, and feel the rightness of a certain place at a certain time. The hungry, canny old city sees me coming, young and self-aggrandising, burning with wild surmise and gin; and she opens up before me like a gap-toothed, gold-toothed, sharp-toothed, grimly glorious grin.