This morning I went into town to go to the bank (there's only one branch of my bank in the whole of Glasgow, so it is always very busy) pick a few bits and bobs and treat myself to lunch out. Quite a few amusing moments...
I was riding the up escalator in one of the shopping centres and could not help overhearing the conversation of three young men behind me:
Man 1 - I thought youse was afraid of escalators
Man 2 - Aye, I was until I went to Manchester, then I learned how tae do them
Man 3 - Manchester - that's sooo big
Well, Manchester isn't small but I'd lay odds that Glasgow's shopping area is far bigger.
Then I was in a department store, of the very English persuasion, so much so that many of the staff make me, born in London, seem like a northerner. Anyway, I found what I was looking for - a wooden banana tree - and took it to pay for. I commented to the woman behind the counter (who was not English) that it was hard to find these items now and that maybe they were going out of fashion. I was rather bemused by her, totally non-ironic, comment that bananas are exotic!!!
Some people ask me why I love city life, being bemused that I would leave English village life for a big industrial city where 'they talk funny' (they 'talk funny' in the semi-rural Midlands too), but moments like these are part of the delight. I love the energy and diversity of big cities, the way they are really villages (or clusters of villages) that combine options of anonymity and engagement. Anyway, now I know that bananas are exotic, I feel I must be very posh indeed to eat them almost daily!!