The night shift January 17, 2008Posted by BiB in Uncategorized.
And not a sweet sound coming down to be had for love nor money.
I’ve had my biannual clock-change, which I really need to align with when the clocks go back and forward for the sake of neatness. Except my clock-change is by twelve hours. And at some point in the winter – this year, now – I decide that, if I am to see daylight at all before midsummer, I have to change shift and get up at 5am rather than go to bed then.
Which makes for a quiet start to the day. Of course half the neighbours are primly up, wandering primly around preparing to go off to lead prim days. Odd that the neighbours can pull of primness while semi-nude, but they can. One stiff-backed neighbour eats her breakfast primly. The neighbour who drinks wine alone breakfasts geometrically at his table. Others primly draw their curtains so that us nosy neighbours can’t sneak a prim look at how they live their early starts.
Pitch outside and silent for the first couple of hours of the day. The traffic doesn’t set the cobbles rumbling in earnest till the sun’s risen languidly over the rooftops. The children trudging with grim determination off to school don’t make much noise. Nor do the Berliners with regular jobs as they turn up their collars and purse their lips in readiness for pursuit of another euro. And it’s too cold and too dark for us wastrels to bustle about on our balconies. No need for me, now that smoking’s a thing of the past, to be on ours till the summer. And no way for the residents of the 100%-long-term-unemployment house across the street to enjoy theirs as builders have knocked the bastards clean away in some early stage of a total architectural makeover.
Too early for the Russian to elephant noisily and meatily around the place. Too early to seek company in the TV. It would feel pornographic to switch to my favourite channels at this time of the morning/night. Though Al Jazeera might easily be showing something gripping at any time. (Do folk watch? They do these great little slice-of-life documentaries. I’ve watched an Iranian online imam, a Swedish woman on a quest to find her Sami father whom she’d only seen on a stamp and a formerly homeless Argentinian who now worked for Loony Radio. Really. Quite marvellous. Their news coverage ain’t bad either.) And Belsat – yes, we have a Belarusian channel – only starts broadcasting its pap later on. Plus the neighbours would have complained by the time my finger had completed its first transaction with the remote-control.
The shipping forecast is yet to begin, but that’s better to be lulled to sleep by than lulled awake to with its sea-shanty names and cyclones losing their identity. (God Save the Queen might shudder you awake again though.) The farmers will be on soon, complaining of the cost of raising pigs. The French lesson’s almost over.
Any luck and there might soon be enough blue in the sky for a pair of sailor’s trousers.