Writing from the basement

I often write posts on here from a basement. It’s a basement at Pavilion Parade, Brighton, because it’s a place where you can sit down and it’s pleasant and isn’t a beach so you can use a laptop. The other place where you can sit down and it’s nice is the beach, but it’s not so good for using laptops there. I mean, I’ve never tried, and to be honest, I saw someone using their laptop on the Palace Pier the last time I was there. But while on the beach, I like to be busy by being on the beach only, not stuck in my head trying to unstuck it with a website. So when in Brighton, I usually write from here – the basement.

And it often happens in-between my classes on Tuesdays. There isn’t much else to do in-between those classes. The only two decent options that I have, really, is either reading or writing something on my laptop. This is because starting to watch a movie in the middle of the day might be quite disruptive, and since I have class only one day a week anyway, I want to keep this day as studious as possible. ‘Oh why,’ you could say, ‘Asia, you could after all use your lunchtime to have lunch?’. And do know that I do have lunch pretty much every day, which might as well be a tick off the list of successful taking care of yourself as a young adult. That is, if you forget the fact that too often it is some basic sandwich, an Oasis and crisps bought for £3.30 from the Student Union shop, because so far this year (and bear in mind it’s almost mid-March) I’ve refused to cook myself meals that produce leftovers that I could later pack up for a packed lunch. I don’t even have anything to pack my lunch in, and whenever I visit the Brighton & Hove city library, I start to think that perhaps there is something about pretty/silly/cool lunchboxes – if I bought one just because it made me laugh/go aww/want to show it off to friends, it could be a good excuse to actually prepare some lunch and put it into that box. (Why the library? OH, because in order to get into the library you have to walk through a gift shop first, which is a lot of book-related stuff which is legit, but also I’m not paying £10 for a tiny lunchbox, so all that official HP and GoT merchandise really means nothing to me).

The location of the Brighton & Hove Jubilee Library is a little bit strange, when you think about it. There’s a big flat grey square in front of its entrance. To the east, there’s the big Prince Regent Swimming Complex. To the west, there’s Las Iguanas, YO! Sushi, and Tesco Express (is it just me or suddenly everything at Tesco requires you to use your Tesco Clubcard in order to be a reasonable price at all? like, all sales items need you to use your Clubcard. I have one, but usually it sits in my wallet at home, since I’ve switched from carrying a wallet <it was too heavy because of all my loyalty cards> to carrying my cards in my pockets, since I don’t ever need change for anything, ever). And to the south there’s the Chilli Pickle, a fancy Indian restaurant. You could say it’s a fairly Brighton square because it’s multicultural; I’d say it’s Brighton because it makes little sense. There’s a fair share of poverty mixed into the less-cheap restaurant scene of the square – either the poverty of the sad empty space, without a flowerbed or a bush in sight; or the homeless outside the Tesco or inhabiting the benches outside the library; or the hollowness and hostility of the streets leading to that place, where instead of being baited by colourful storefronts and outdoor cafe seating (but head to the next parallel street and you’ll get all that and more in Bond Street), you’ll always get honked on by delivery vans (or some other vans, maybe they actually contain mutilated human bodies? who knows) and other damn cars trying to pass through. Car arrogance, I’m telling you – carrogance – but if you want to get carless, go to the Netherlands. Carlessness isn’t Brighton’s brand; Brighton’s for the queer stuff.

(To answer any potential questions, no, I won’t be here for the Brighton Pride Parade. It’s in August and I’m not planning on being here then. I won’t even be here for the Brighton Gin Festival, because it’s in July. Out of the two, I’d much rather go to the Gin Festival – so long as there’s rose lemonade provided).

I’ll tell you what, I really wanted to get in some vegetables for lunch, but there simply weren’t any. Urban Eat might market themselves as supporting urban gardening, but there isn’t much gardening that actually partakes in producing their food. So today it is oven baked walkers, a sugar free Ribena, and a chicken salad sandwich to tide me over until 8.30pm which is the time I’ll probably get home. Good thing I’ve got a flask of black coffee with me – I’ll consume at least one decent thing today.

Send help, I need to find out how to make packed lunches to stop throwing £3.30 at the BSU shop every lunchtime in exchange for a limp sandwich and kid juice.

(picture “for attention”; it’s the winter view of Foxbury campus in Britechester, The Sims 4 video game)

(also, my Dad’s turning 66 today – happy b-day Dad)

Published by kotersey

Graduated from the University of Edinburgh with a First in geography, and from the University of Brighton with a Master's in history of design and material culture. Probably drinking iced coffee and thinking about buildings.

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