As part of this year's September Shorts I've asked writer friends to contribute posts inspired by the title One Cool Thing. They'll be telling you about one cool thing they're looking forward to as Autumn approaches. It might be a book or movie, a tabletop or computer game, an event or visit to a special place, a chance to achieve something... or perhaps even an exciting new project.
Today is the turn of the wonderful Anne Cassidy - writer of Looking for JJ, The Moth Girls, No Virgin and No Shame. You can check out her website here.
Anne Cassidy: The Central Line
I look forward to getting back onto my bit of the Central Line from Stratford onwards. It comes out of the tunnel at Leyton and then, like a quaint country train circa 1950s, it cuts through houses and shops and golf courses and parks all the way to Epping.
Travelling from the centre of town, it’s a different story. I’ve stood in packed conditions, endured the heat, the lack of a seat, the ear splitting noise of the wheels scraping along the rails. It’s an absolute ordeal... and then the train suddenly bursts out into daylight in the middle of Leyton.
People get off, the train toddles along, passing the back gardens of suburban housing reminding me that I’m close to home; fresh air comes in at every stop and the train becomes emptier and emptier.
This line, which is down a hill from where I live (and up again on my way back) means I leave my car at home. I travel on it free (freedom pass). These stops represent my life; my shops, cinemas, restaurants; my hospital, libraries, my family, my sense of being a part of a little world in East London.
I miss it and when I’m sure I’m not going to get sick and die, I’ll get back on it.