Monday, May 31, 2010

Antique Shop 1

The Roman arches made her happy; nice and simple and solid, the tops perfect semi-circles. So secure that stone was, and so comforting. Nothing like the Gothic spires. No elaboration and frilliness here, just perfect shapes set in stone. Thick and clunky and homey. They made you feel secure. Catherine stood under one of them at the United Church at Holy Corner. The rain was pouring down outside, but it was good rain since it was spring and the flowers needed to be fed. The flaming yellow tulips planted in the Meadows and the circles of head-bobbing daffodils, and all the little flowers Catherine couldn’t name. She didn’t know about living things. All she could classify were stones and surfaces. Trees and plants she could never name, but she appreciated them, all the same. It was good to wait out the rain here, and she was bored anyway. Needed a breath of fresh air and to get out of the flat. Away from a loud, shrieking housemate, and a funny-smelling sullen one.

Catherine was an architecture student at the University. She enjoyed it, but felt sort of aloof. University was big and impersonal and it swallowed you up. Mainly Catherine kept herself to herself. She went to lectures and seminars and sat quietly taking notes, studied the flash and glare that reflected off the professor’s glasses and went back to her rented room when she was done.

For some reason, she liked coming down here. It wasn’t a very far walk from Marchmont. Down Morningside road with its view of the hills and the white stripes of the artificial ski slope at Hillsend. Sinking down into the district of millionaires. Her friend Susan told her that Britain’s highest concentration of millionaires lived in Morningside, but Catherine was skeptical. Surely they would be in some area of London, she thought, not up here.

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