Living in a Ghost Town?


There is an end-of-term assignment I have to do, and I don’t want to do it. Nothing against the assignment: it’s a fine assignment from a fine lecturer; we’ve had heaps and heaps of time to do it; gathering the research has been enjoyable; it’s a topic near to my heart… and yet? I still don’t want to do it. I’m not alone; this paper has been a bear for most of my other classmates as well. Perhaps we resist it because it’s by far the most academic thing we’ve had to do all year. For my part, I’m spoiled by workshops and all I want to do is spend my days writing short stories about supper clubs, unrequited infatuations, and blackouts. Alas.

The deadline approaches, and bribing myself is quite effective. Today’s conditions: two pages of my paper for a crepe and back-to-back episodes of Nip/Tuck. It would be a double celebration, as I’ve existed on a rice-and-potato diet ever since being felled by that plate of evil mussels last week. Well, I didn’t write two pages – I wrote three pages! – so I began my victory march down Dame, making a turn at Great George’s Street past coffee shops and snaking side streets. Great George’s Street became Aungier, and then I came to a screeching halt as I stood across the street from Fafie’s Creperie; it was closed, the grates drawn and cold. It was only then that I noticed that nearly every business and restaurant around me was also shuttered. The Oxfams, the gourmet groceries, the chemists, and even a good number of pubs. My stomach growled but I continued on through Aungier; Aungier became Camden and all down the street, the blank faces of shuttered businesses continued to taunt me.

But it was only 8pm on a Monday night. Had a religious holiday snuck past my radar? Was there a rugby game on – would Scots storm the streets in kilts again? Had Dublin become Crystal River, Florida?

I don’t know. But I’m hungry and wish I had my Victory Crepe.

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