In Waterstone's bookshop, a manager or sales rep is summarising to an assistant the contents of books which are about to be delivered. The synopses come with the rapidity of a machine gun: "It's a biography. She was living in Florence", I hear "...She was killed by her husband.... It's got a nice cover."
"A Rolls Royce of a Burger," announces a poster outside a restaurant.
In the queue to buy a paper, I see a familiar face in an unfamiliar place. I am about to greet her but can't remember who she is. It is only when I stop for a cup of tea at my favourite cafe that I notice an absentee, the proprietor. It is she whom I have just failed to put a name to in the newsagent.