This is our truth, tell us yours
I wrote the piece below in 2012 — it may strike a chord with those who enjoyed John Harris’s piece in yesterday’s Guardian.
I have loved her since I was 15. It was a wild, passionate love, full of daring and excitement. It made my heart beat faster every time I thought we might meet. Her cosmopolitan charms and robust beauty made me flush with passion.
Then I discovered she no longer made me feel that way. I grew bored, less tolerant, less easily amused by her foibles, the challenges she presented. The final straw? Another needless detour to get to where I wanted.
So it’s time to admit the truth. London, I no longer love you. You are no longer my city, my love, the place where my sensibilities, sharpened by Michael Moorcock and Peter Ackroyd, saw every flaw and fault as evidence for the proposition that you were the greatest of cities. Yesterday, I stood on the kerb in Charing Cross Road, with my back to the roadblock that is the works required to sink billions of our money into Crossrail, a government’s gift to the estate agents and landowners of the Thames Valley, and I realised that my blood had run cold where once it ran hot at the mention of London’s name.
So send out your pigeons Dai, and on their wings fasten messages to tell the people of Cork, the people of Hull, the small women of the abandoned coasts of the north east that this former lover of London has had enough. Whether London deserted me for Boris, or I grew too old to know her charms, I’ll never know. But the love affair is over, and the union should be dissolved.
Oh, and Idris Davies? Google him and have some fun.