Sunday, April 02, 2006

Captains, surreal picture, humps

There's a sign in Sainsbury's above a desk at the end of a shopping aisle. "Today's checkout captain, " it says. "Let's have one other gaudy night: call to me my sad captains; fill our bowls once more; let's mock the midnight bell."

At the end of the row of checkouts in Sainsbury's, is a picture-window. Looking on to a corner of waste land on which grows some bedraggled trees, it frames a surreal picture. Distributed among the branches of the trees, hang several transparent, plastic bags. Behind the trees, is a steep bank and a wall on top of that. In the background is a tower crane, its horizontal mast extended and waiting for something to happen. A watery sun beams into the window causing the reflections of people in the store to hover in the glass.

Half way down the terrace where we live, opposite the entrance to another road, there is a sign with arrows pointing in either direction. Above one arrow are the words: humps 300 yards; above the other, humps 600 yards. You know what it means. But you wonder what it could mean.

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