There's a particular grubbiness that comes with travel. You start showered and fresh in clean and comfortable clothes, upbeat and hopeful that this will be like travel in the movies; sunlight flaring on the windows, heads resting on shoulders, laughter and smiles with a lightly jazzy soundtrack. But in reality the grubbiness has set in.
Change lives through art maybe. Write beautifully. Cherish your friends, stay true to your principles, live passionately and fully and well. Experience new things. Love and be loved if at all possible. Eat sensibly. Stuff like that.
From an evolutionary point of view, most emotions – fear, desire, anger – serve some practical purpose, but nostalgia is a useless, futile thing because it is a longing for something that is permanently lost, and I felt its futility now.
But now the train had finally begun to move, and Albie had switched the fearless truth-telling eye of his camera lens from his untied laces to the walls of the tunnels under east London, because you can never have enough pictures of dirty concrete.
I'm aware that couples tend to embellish 'how we met' folklore with all kinds of detail and significance. We shape and sentimentalise these first encounters into creation myths to reassure ourselves and our offspring that it was somehow 'meant to be'.