This is a whole new challenge for me this week. The Red Dress Club hosts a weekly 'red writing hood' prompt and then you write a short story. This week's prompt asked you to begin your piece with the words, "I could never have imagined" and end it with "Then the whole world shifted."
I could have never imagined I would voluntarily be boarding a train at 7am on a Saturday. But there I was, bag slung across my body, hopping on and seeking out a seat with a table. The train from Lancaster to Glasgow runs frequently, but I didn't want to have to fight the crowds later in the morning. I had brought a book and an iPod, but wasn't too interested in either so early. My camera stayed stowed for the time being. This portion of the journey was more about observation than documentation.
About 20 minutes into the trip, a man about my own age boarded and sat across and diagonal from me. He had a messenger bag and seemed to be quickly involved in some academic endeavor or other. I recognized that look, the ability to immediately zone out of your surroundings and cram all the necessary information into your brain before your final destination.
We arrived in Glasgow and I was struck by the contradictions throughout the city. As I traveled by bus and on foot, the periods of historic growth and decline were undeniable. There were industrial areas, with tenement housing and barely recognizable shipyards. The end of continuous decades of war had left scars in the way of significant loss of industry, jobs and support of families. I walked on passed the centuries old churchyard on the hill and into the streets lined with Georgian-era stone houses and mansions now developed into office buildings. I turned the corner and was transported into the Victorian times, where the people really learned how to spend money. I visited the People's Palace and with eyes to the dark sky, headed toward the 'newest area' of the city, the section the leaders and local economists hoped would revitalize the city.
As I strolled within the pedestrian walkways, I was shocked by the crush of people trying to get to the high end stores, the variety of street entertainers, and the tourists trying to see every last thing. I saw how the influence of the 21st century had all but erased the stunning history of the city, and the whole world shifted.
Also linking up today to Jan and Straight out of the camera Sunday. See more SOOC photos here.