On Hove Seafront

Yesterday’s rain meant that Hove seafront was utterly deserted for a change; the promenade devoid of joggers, kids with scooters, families and couples. The only other person I spotted was a tramp spread out on a bench, rummaging through a collection of creased shopping bags in search of some oddment, or of nothing. Cleared of people, the beach chalets and handrails to the sea gave the impression of a colourful lido, as still and undisturbed as if at first light on an October morning. Huge, disc-shaped puddles glittered on the pathway, sparkling under a pale grey sky and failing light. Despite being wet and cold, it took a while before I could tear myself away from just watching and feeling the enormous silence. Like walking into an empty church and hearing your footsteps ring on the flagged floor, for a moment I felt like the only person on earth.


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