What Pegman Saw: My Destination

Photo by Jennifer Lim on Google Maps

Up early, a last double-check of the pack. Everything in, nothing forgotten?

The taxi toots. We bundle in. ‘Coach station please.’

Saturday, turnaround day, the holidaymakers go home.

The driver calls, ‘London Victoria.’ That’s ours.

The coach is crowded, multi-ethnic skins and loud London voices. They soon settle down.

Tightly squeezed through Suffolk towns, already congested when coaches used horses, the last pick-up done, and like a bird from a cage, the coach escapes onto the motorway.

Now we’re freewheeling, next stop London.

Soon after, we’re under that whopping circular flyover. We groan. Beyond here the chug-chug begins … past shop fronts bright with cheap clothes and sarees, past street-markets, synagogues and temples. Past Big Ben and Buck House until disgorged at ARRIVALS.

Packs reclaimed, we hurry across the road to DEPARTURES and check out the boards. For London is never our destination.

Wordcount 143

Written for What Pegman Saw: London

About crispina kemp

Spinner of Asaric and Mythic tales
This entry was posted in Mostly Micro, Thoughts and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

24 Responses to What Pegman Saw: My Destination

  1. Oh! Wonderful description of traffic and people and the desire to get where one needs to be. “already congested when coaches used horses” What a great line.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Violet Lentz says:

    What a fun adventure you provided me with this morning.

    Liked by 1 person

    • crimsonprose says:

      So glad you enjoyed. My daughter read it yesterday and said, Yep, that’s familiar. Familiar from many a coach journey into London, there to change to another coach to reach the southern counties (where they have hills which we lack in any quantity in flat old Norfolk)

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Dale says:

    What a wonderful ride you have taken us on. I like the short sentences acting like stops along the way; then the longer one, letting us know there are no more stops till you reach the destination.
    Great writing, Crispina.

    Liked by 3 people

  4. Dear Crispina,

    You made me feel like I was there. Wonderfully written piece.



    Liked by 1 person

  5. Lynn Love says:

    Brought back many memories, this. Spent hours at Victoria coach station as a kid, travelling between mum’s in Derbyshire and Dad’s in Romford. Back in the 80s Victoria station was more like a garage than a hub for commuters – filthy, smelly, with no obvious safe way to cross lines of diesel belching coaches. I found it terrifying! You reimagine those days so clearly, with the sights and sounds of the big city. Great writing Crispina

    Liked by 1 person

    • crimsonprose says:

      I was frequently in London from the 1970s through 1980s and into 2000s, either passing from Victoria Coach to Victoria Rail, or for connections to other coaches. I don’t remember how awful the station, not in detail, but it certainly wasn’t as we see it today. And yea, life was taken in both hands as we headed from one drop off to the next pick up. And the constant smell of diesel!
      It’s a few years now since my last visit to Victoria. I noticed then more attention given to passenger safety, with an enclosed waiting area and not allowed near to the coaches until called. Still chaotic. But a great place to people watch.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. pennygadd51 says:

    Very evocative story, conjuring up memories from my childhood. I love your last line particularly!

    Liked by 1 person

    • crimsonprose says:

      Yea. when I was younger I spent time in London. No, it doesn’t appeal. It’s a place to pass through.


      • pennygadd51 says:

        I lived there for three years in my early twenties, but my memories of the coach station predate that by quite a margin. As in your story, I was passing through to somewhere else. In some ways living in London was exhilarating, but in many ways it was soul-destroying. It seemed very corrupt – come to that, it still does…

        Liked by 1 person

      • crimsonprose says:

        I never actually lived there. A dated a Londoner, and would stay weekends. Great, we’d go to art galleries and concerts and stuff, but I always felt an outsider, and I was always glad to go home. A few years latet my journeys were purely pass-throughs on the way to the south. What I see in the media doesn’t tempt me to stay as much as a night, now.

        Liked by 1 person

  7. k rawson says:

    I love the language in this! It does triple duty, evoking the feel of the trip through the clipped efficient phrasing. It took me right along with you! (Thank you, by the way 🙂 )

    Liked by 1 person

  8. great description of the bustle. well done

    Liked by 1 person

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