a reply to: Static Sky
Last year, apparently, I bought an item from a shop which no longer exists.
My nephew was about to have a serious operation in hospital and wou
ld likely remain there for several weeks to convalesce; so he made the unusual request that I buy him a large sports holdall to keep all his clothes
He and his wife live out in the sticks and couldn't think where they could buy something like this. So I says yeah.
I went to the local market hall...a large old building full of market stalls which sell many diverse items, you can pretty much get anything you want
So I goes there, finds a stall, locates desired item, buys it, goes home. Happiness.
Visit the nephew, give him the holdall, job done.
A few weeks go by and I need a charger for my phone. So I goes back to the same place...only it's not there anymore. Not only is the stall not there,
NO STALLS were there. I knew there had been extensive renovations and new bits added on here and there over the years. But the stalls had always been
a feature of the market hall. Couldn't find a one.
I'm like, "No, no, you're doing it wrong. Retrace your steps. Somewhere you haven't looked yet."
Finally I gave up looking, and, shaking my head in frustration (but also now beginning to sense a frisson that something very strange was happening),
decide to leave and head home.
As I'm walking, I see a woman sweeping the floor. Ah! A worker, she'll know.
So I says to her, "Please tell me I'm not going mad...this IS the market hall, right?" She nods.
"I thought it was. What happened to the stalls?"
"You're not from round here, are you?"
"No", I lied, too embarrassed to correct her perception.
"[some large company I can't just recall] won a multi million pound contract to build shops and arcades - the traders had to leave and their stalls
were all taken down."
I felt sick and dizzy. "When?"
"Oh...good few years ago. Well, I've been here seven years and there were no stalls even then..."
The holdall is real, it exists, my nephew still has it and uses it. He thinks I went somewhere else and mistakenly believed it was the market hall.
But I don't know anywhere else with indoor stalls; the place I went to was the market hall and there were stalls everywhere. I know
In fact, I've window-shopped and bought stuff from different stalls in the market hall at different times within the last five years.
Where had I really gone then?
It was only last year; still baffles and haunts me.