Weird things happen as you grow up. I never used to like brussel sprouts or cabbage, now they are some of my favorite things to eat. It's the same with English. I used to hate it when I was at school, however, not making the grade for the O level exam was probably the best thing that happened as I returned to college to study it when I was older.

Education really is wasted on the young.

Here's a wee essay I wrote when I was commuting to London. I hope you enjoy.

Wood Green.(07/05/05)

The journey was a long one, longer than any he had ever taken. Longer than his whole life to this point.

Every rattle and click of the underground was strange to him. The dank earthy smells foreign.
A tune played over and over in his head as the distant thoughts in his mind went busily about their daily chores.
He looked around at the others sharing this journey with him.

Unusual hair styles, weird clothes that shouldn't work together...but somehow did.
Solitary businessmen investigating the financial papers for 'an edge'.
The student wrapt in the music, (too loud), that came from his walkman.
The young couple who shared their daily travel to work and quietly so much more.

He closed his eyes to shut all this out and prepare for what was to come. Then he noticed the tune again. It was an old song by Prince, (or the artist formerly know as Prince. He never could quite work that one out). It reminded him of teenage school discos and clumsy but sincere attempts of romance.

How would this work out? he wondered. Would he make a fool of himself...or worse? Rejected? Laughed at? Damn! he wished that song hadn't lodged itself there. It had been rattling about in there all day. He didn't even like Prince really.

He settled into his thoughts again. Had he made a mistake coming here? It would change things, there would be no going back.

A decisiveness marshalled his thoughts like a sergeant preparing the young men for battle. He had made his choice. Fate would decide the outcome.

'Bing!....Wood Green. Next stop Wood Green'. A drab but functional female voice announced over the loudhailer.
The ear piercing screech of the brakes grew louder as every vibration on the train turned into a judder.
Everyone braced themselves for the impending stop. They looked around to see if any of the passengers departures would vacate a better vantage point...a better seat.

His inner turmoil was banished momentarily at the necessity for action. The world around him sprang sharply into focus.

The mad exodus for the door commenced as the occupants stampeded like cattle to once more graze in the sunshine above.

'Tickets please' some uniformed official cried as he presided over the two poor lackeys who had to collect the tickets from this sea of human purpose. Typical, he thought. every line of work has one. Give a guy a badge.

It suddenly dawned on him that the 'tickets please' referred to him as well.
He didn't need this right now. This was an annoyance. He wanted to prepare himself for what could be the most important event of his life. He fumbled in his pockets. Among the detritus he found a crumpled and rolled up ticked. He regretted now nibbling the corner and felt foolish as he handed it over to the man.

Trying as best he could to gather together his thoughts as they were before. He joined the crowd marching upwards to the start of their working day. As he reached the top of the stairs he sidestepped left into an alcove to let the throng subside.

He wanted to be sure.
He wanted to be prepared.

The passengers filtered through the exit and scattered like a flock of birds after a rifle shot.
He waited.

God!, what was he doing here? What could this mean to his life? What would he do if..... why wont that bloody tune shut up.
It was back again going over and over. He hated it when that happened.
Sometimes someone would whistle a bar or two from a tune and it was stuck there for days.
Calm down you stupid bastard he told himself. you'll find out soon enough. Have a bit of faith in yourself, you're strong enough to deal with this either way. Que Cera!

The pulse in his temples had slowed to a steady dull thump that reminded him he was alive. It offered a measure of time in this crazy place his mind was. The moment was here...here goes.

Step by measured step like a man approaching gallows, he moved towards the now empty exit. He would know if she was the one the moment their eyes met. It was as important to him that she knew he was the one as well. As he stepped outside the tube station his eyes were blinded by the brightness.

As they adjusted time stopped. Silence. Focus.
His eyes were drawn slowly to the place where she said she would be. A single heartbeat pounded in his ears as he noticed how calm and serene her face was. Her green eyes showed a longing warmth and a tender need to be as certain as he was now that their feelings were shared.

Slowly, purposefully, she moved towards him.
My God...hold it together he said to himself.

In his heart he knew he had made the right choice. There was no need for a wave their honest smiles formed a welcome of their own.

That damn tune again...argh It was driving him crazy..

The words of the tune came to mind and he smiled to himself quietly.

He had noticed she was wearing a raspberry beret.
Just like the ones you would find in a second hand store.

He thought he loved her...