Personal stuff, not tech, some fiction

An opening for a longer story

This started life when I was sat outside a cafe in central London, near quite a few of the very touristy hotels which tend to harbour well-heeled tourists. This girl walked past, I made some notes, and this turned into the opening for a story. I would like to know more about what she gets up to, because she sounds like fun. Annoying, but fun.

At 14 she took a trip to London with her parents. London! The greatest city in the world, home to punk, home to everything she believed in. In the hotel in her room – her own room! – she dressed in the clothes she wanted to, the clothes that marked her out as different in Minnesota, the clothes which would send her mother into a silent sulky rage. A long-sleeved fishnet top she had bought for the occasion, Sex Pistols t-shirt defiantly over it. Combat trousers with holes in them. Her platform Doc Martins, which had tipped the baggage over the limit at the airport (she had made her father pay extra rather than leave them behind). Her make up took forever. Just her eyeliner took an hour.

Her parents knocked at the door to check if she was ready, and she shouted no. Minutes later they knocked again. Five times, each time louder and more insistent than the last, until she ran to the door, yanking it open so hard it hit the wall.

As they left the hotel, she said to herself: “OK, walk like you know what you’re doing. Walk like you’ve walked more than five minutes in these shoes. And when people stare – stare right back.”

The only people dressed like her were Japanese tourists. The British girls, far from being the snarly attitude-laden Demi-vampires she expected, looked... normal. Where were the punks? Where were the people like her?

Not, it seemed, in an Angus Steakhouse.