In a Bookshop in Finland

They have placed you on a high stool – metal legs, pink vinyl top – a high stool on a platform in the centre of a shop, in Finland where, surprisingly, your books are kept in stock. They have fed you vodka – 80 percent per shot – and you are smiling as if you’ll never stop in a bookshop in Finland. But these are shy people, won’t meet eyes when they talk and all they want to do is walk silently round a bookshop in Finland. They have no desire to gawp. While you are Nelson on a column, David Blaine on his pole, talent sliding off that slippery seat, running out into snow-covered street where the air is clear and chill as vodka. And you are left completely alone.
Anne Summerfield
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