Lost in London

A look at London and life in general through the eyes of someone who sometimes can't bear to watch.

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Don't drop bombs, baby

Well, of course, London was hit by bomb attacks on Thursday. Usually when I see things like this on the news, I have the reaction that I’m sure lots of people have. Initial shock, and of course, a need to find out what’s been going on as soon as possible.

Thursday 7 July started out like any other. It was a bit cold and muggy (I know that mugginess is usually associated with hot days but it really was muggy) and as I set out to the tube I, like everybody else except four people from Yorkshire, had no idea what was going on. It was a variety of journey nightmares that came together to bring me to the top of Woburn Place at around a quarter to ten, but they’re too dull to mention here and involve me ‘tsk’ing a lot and getting off and on Northern line trains and a 73 bus. The real meat starts when the 73 gets stuck in traffic outside Euston and I get off to head for Angel on foot, via McDonald’s in King’s Cross if I make it in time for breakfast. Bored, I called my mother and chatted. I noted that there were police and fire service crew everywhere. Mum remarked that it sounded like a bomb scare, and just as she did, a fireman drew a cordon in front of me and said that the road was close and there was no access to King’s Cross.

“Go home,” said Mum, becoming worried. “Don’t be silly,” I replied, “I have to get to work.” BANG.

It seemed that all I could say was ‘Oh my God” repeatedly as I was knocked off my feet and winded by I don’t know what. I saw dust fill the air and I turned and ran as fast as I could up the road by the side of Euston that goes to Camden. With Mum asking what was wrong, all I could say was that a bomb had gone off; somehow I knew. The next hour was a blur of running, confusion, screaming, panicking, frantic phone calls and disbelief. I didn’t stop running until I reached Mornington Crescent tube station, pausing only occasionally to try and stop people walking the other way. I didn’t know if I was running in the right direction; I’d heard that when Omagh was bombed, hundreds fleeing the first blast ran straight into the second. Now I know what true panic and fear mean.

There are so many emotions and details that I’m missing out from this, but to write it all down would drive me mad and take too long. Suffice to say my brain was like this: dshfguergfsdfjfhgdkjghjkdfghjkdhgjkdfhvjkdvh!!!!

Eventually, my boss came to pick me up, a hysterical wreck shaking and sweating outside Camden Sainsbury’s. I spent the next few hours shivering like a defecating dog at my desk, being fed tea by concerned colleagues.

I won’t go further because I didn’t want to go too serious two entries in. I just thought writing it down, but on reading it, it still doesn’t make me want to go back on the tube any time soon, no matter how much better the news reports are telling me it would make me feel.