The Lost Promenade

What do you do when you’re trying to solve a jigsaw? You start with the pieces around the edges.

Being an island nation, we feel a pull to the sea, an impulse to inhabit the furthest perimeters. But still the English try to tame the landscape. Close to the sand they erect bandstands, on the edge of the cliffs they build crazy golf courses, and pastel-striped windbreaks vainly try to keep the gales at bay. The city smells of piss and the country stinks of shit, so we head for the brine and the candy-floss, and we tie our hair up in Pucci headscarves and go to see what we can find.

We seek the hidden stories, the tiny moments, the bits of shiny nacre in the rock pools. We also seek fabulous bargains in charity shops. Most of all, we seek the lost promenade – a glimpse of something we lost but maybe also the hope of what is yet to come. The lost promenade. A red party frock outside a thrift shop. Kisses in a bus shelter. The first piece of the jigsaw.

If you see us thumbing a lift on the coastal road – wind your window down, don’t sweep on by. For we crave the lost promenade though we know not why.

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