I have a new habit. It is to walk to the park in the late evening, in an attempt to tire myself out enough to sleep. Also, I discovered they are not locking the gates until late if at all, and I do love an amble around a late night park. My senses are heightened; there is a very tame, very suburban sense of danger. Also: what if they locked the gates while I was in there? I would be caged until morning. Or I could climb over the very low fence and walk home. One of the two. But the fence has spikes on it! I could impale myself! Like I said, suburban dangers.*
Tonight, alas, I was thwarted. Two men wearing high vis jackets, those modern uniforms of authority, were locking up the gates. It was exactly midnight, and they were shouting their way through the task like they were auditioning to be bin men. So instead of going inside, I had to walk along the side of the park, sandwiched between idling cars with reclined seats and that tauntingly low spiky iron fence.
Forced onto the main road opposite the William Morris Gallery, I noticed this rather pleasingly retro sport outfitters for the first time. I hope it still exists, as I could do with a billiards table.
I encircled the park via side roads, and passed this temple. The combination of the generic social club architecture and the magnificent Ganesh festooning the entrance like some mighty frieze made me smile.
Last night, I saw a bright moon, and stars, from the relative darkness of the unlit park. Tonight this treat was not available to me, but I at least experienced interesting buildings, steamed up Audis, and that familiar rhythm of my feet on endless pavements past all those houses I will never see inside.
* As I get older, i get increasingly worried about my devil-may-care bath exit strategy. There is the potential for disaster everywhere.