Across Continents

Ken's Blog

Cultural differences

February 5th, 2012

A young woman had complained to the bus driver as she’d disembarked. A man upstairs with a dog. He’d been drinking. Shouting abuse at her and her friend she’d said. The driver did nothing. There’d been a man with a Mohican and rather odd looking long narrow leather boots board. I’d seen him earlier drifting around the centre of Corby. Surreptitiously. But, appearances apart, I was sure he wasn’t the miscreant.

Corby had surprised me. If there was anything left of the steel industry it was well hidden. The only noticeable remanent a sizeable share of the locals with cod Glaswegian accents. As unintelligible as the original. I’d travelled over to use the rather splendid international pool. Presumably so called to secure some European funding. The small, friendly cafe marked Burns Night with haggis.

It sat next to the only other aesthetically pleasing building in Corby. On the outside at least. The Cube. Home to a small theatre, civic offices. And a library. Generous large print section. And bewilderment at my enquiry as to whether they had WiFi. A series of ramps rather than floors suggested a multi-storey car park with change of use.

I’d alighted from the bus in Oundle. Home to a prestigious private school woven deep into the life of the small county town. Venturing into one of a number of smart cafes for a coffee. A woman of Mediterranean origin discussing her daughter’s prospects in the music industry. And hopes for modelling contract. She sat nearby chatting to friends in French.

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