Writing About the Familiar

Remarkably spacious for a student bedroom, first door on the left as you enter this bizarrely affordable yet exclusive EH1 residence. Stocked with neutral furniture bought by the ominously invisible landlord. Breath hangs momentarily in the air, the boiler is still totally unsound. Football boots on the floor, a myriad selection of literature adorns the desk, most of it unread or partially read, none of it I coud afford to buy.

Princes Street in the corner of one eye, the Latvian embassy in the other. Outside the high end solictors offices, BMW, Porsche, Mercedes. I can see into the Piano Man’s house, wall to wall bookshelves stacked with enormous scores centred around a fine Bluthner baby grand piano. The faded green of West Register House’s copper dome stands out against the glare of the frosty roof tops of the West End Village.

The bells of St Johns ring 9 O’clock, right on cue the guy in the blue jacket starts singing U2 songs at the top of his voice on his way to counselling. The professional footballer across the street jumps into his Jeep to get to another futile training session that still won’t make his team win. The contrasting freshly fallen snow on the classical Edwardian cobbles create an intriguingly beautiful deathtrap in the middle of the street.

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