Woke up at four-thirty to the sound of two black girls hanging out on the ramp below, their black London girl accents filling the air outside the window. Directly over that ocean-liner sized estate which greets me every time I look out the window was a crescent moon with a star underneath like the crescent moon and star in Islam.
I fell back to sleep with the sound of the girls still chattering on the ramp, the faint whisper of the breeze through the tree branches.
When I woke up again the sun was just breaking across the sky behind the estate, yellow around the edges then faint blue darkening to purple. It was maybe seven-thirty. By the time I’d gotten up and gone into the kitchen, sunlight was sparkling off the mirrored face of Hannibal House, the London College of Communication tower, making those two remarkably unlovely buildings seem almost beautiful - shining in a dozen different points about the buildings leading to the river, narrowing in on the towers of Westminster as if Big Ben and it’s sister tower had become beacons for the sun.
Fifteen minutes later, the sun broke free of estate on the other side, casting the monolith face into shadow so you could barely make out the metal plates on over the windows. The sky shone palest blue, like the sky far out at sea, and the jumble of offices and rowhouses and tower blocks which fill the archipelago south of Westminster shone with the glow of buildings along the Mediterranean.