I walk across the road, my wellies splashing in the puddles as the rain beats on my umbrella, dripping down until it splashes off the end of the (only mildy extravagant) spokes. I adjust my handbag, feeling the weight - not of its contents for I am used to carrying my life in there - but of the bag itself. Feeling the bag proclaiming its status. Not in an arrogant, look at me, way but in a quiet, knowing way. The half caught secret nod that such a bag confers. Because this is a bag where you either know or you do not. Only up close, when you feel its leather and see its tell-tale signs do you know. Otherwise it is a secret for, not the chosen few, but simply the few.
I can see that we are going to get on. Already it has lifted my mood. Lifted what started - when? With me kicking boxes in my office in impotent anger on Saturday night? No, my grump has its roots elsewhere, that rather odd feeling that something intangible is, at least in its present guise, over. That horrible end of season feeling which sitting in an empty theatre gives you, where the current adventure is over and the next one has not quite begun.
The bag knows none of this. But it hangs there, permenant, comforting as it dangles off of my arm.
In my ears those ever familiar chords strike up. The rain is no longer a hassle, it is part of the myth of the song. I stride out against it, against Gary Lightbody's vocals, lost in my own world of memory, some mine, some of those whose words and thoughts I have bought into.
The memories blur at the edges, the wellies splash in the puddles, the rain drips off of the umbrella, Gary sings as though his heart may break. And, fortified, me and my Paddington march onwards.
Everything is, in that moment, utterly, overwhelmingly, perfect.