Soundtrack: The Monkees - Missing Links
It's a very sad week. As of tomorrow morning, the London Routemaster is no more.
I work by the route of the 159, which will be the last Routemaster service. All week there's been hordes of men taking photos at the crossroads, but it was only yesterday when reading BBC Magazine that I realised just what they were taking photos of.
Today has just been funny. I popped out at lunch, and I've never seen so many of the bloody things. And there were gold ones! And there were pre-Routemaster ones an'all! My boss took a slight detour (via two Routemasters) on his way back from a meeting and said there were hundreds of men with cameras. A fellow passenger apparently exclaimed "They're not usually this clean".
I was terrified of Routemasters when I first moved to London. I'm going to fall off! How do you pay for a ticket? Where's the bell to say what stop to get off at? Back then the 159 and 12 were both Routemasters and I had no choice but to conquer my fear.
It was very soon that I realised their glory. You can sit up at the front and pretend you're a driver! Is the traffic slow? Sod it, jump off in the middle of the road and get run over - at least you'll get to your destination quicker! You can pull the bell string and pretend you're a conductor! You can risk your life and catch the bus when it stops at traffic lights! You can pretend you're on a rollercoaster as you stand by the exit when you turn a corner.
The Routemasters make London. I'll be so sad to see them leave. :(