the young woman sat across the aisle is called kirsty. her notebook consists of plain paper, filled with her neat black handwriting, careless doodles, studied designs, photos, notes, lists and details that would have no meaning to the unknowing. she is a hive of restrained energy with a constantly shifting focus, flicking through her book, lingering on a page with a yellow foam flower stuck in the top right corner, adding a line here, making a list there, tightening her high, neat, pony tail of brown hair in it’s purple band, sending text messages in stations, gazing at the receding landscape, and all with a look of haughty disdain that is accentuated by hard brown eyes that sit astride her sharp, aquiline nose. they are wreathed by eyelashes that might have had the satin black mascara applied individually to each one. her long, thin, silver earrings lie in inanimate unison with her black and silver earphones, the inky wire of sound taking the form of the metal rods until freed to follow its own course through space. her torso is an abstract pattern of interlocking and interlacing black, red and magnolia circles and rectangles printed onto the fabric that hugs her figure, revealing enough to excite an already curious mind but not enough to draw the attention of one that is idle. her long, thin, active, fingers with their trimmed and unvarnished nails extend from her half covered arms and terminate in a thin line of black text on the white page.

she takes two sips of her bottled water, deftly replaces the screw cap and takes out the headphones, puts on her coat of pale cloth with its fur trimming and readies herself to alight from the train as it covers the forlorn industrial approach to the station where her journey on this train ends. she has collected her powder blue weekend bag, her rucksack is over both shoulders and she is waiting first in the gaggle by the door as the conductor announces the times of connecting services on other platforms. once free of the confines of the air conditioned tube and into the sharp morning air she checks the computerised display screens with an air of curiosity and then moves on with controlled purpose, not hindered by her baggage or the impression she has unknowingly left in your mind.

when i feel lost i just slip away, silently. stoned – dido.