To be honest, a family shopping expedition for a new pair of shoes for my son at Gunwharf Quays (or anywhere) is not one of my lovely things to do, especially on a baking hot sunny afternoon!
I'm restricted by family privacy protocols from fully divulging the details and depths of the stress which such an activity brings into the Universe, but I'm sure that the tremors from earlier this afternoon have spun off down the Gunwharf wormhole and are still being measured somewhere out on Alpha Centauri...
However, as we were trudging back to The Hard train station, physically tired and mentally aching, I glanced up and saw a sign on a tall post. There against the backdrop of a cloudless, deep blue sky was a sign which I'd never noticed, despite the fact I must have walked past it hundreds of times before. My partner said it's been there for years. It doesn't seem attached to any particular business and most importantly, it's NOT TRYING TO SELL ME ANYTHING! It appears to just be standing there, an eccentric and benevolent survivor of some past time, a still and silent appeal to anyone who chances to look skywards, that it's now safe for the positivity and joyfulness mercilessly crushed by shopping trips, to come back out to play.
Unfortunately, because I stopped to look, we missed our train by about 10 seconds which didn't help to get the rest of the family smiling!
I'm sure someone will tell me that actually this sign is a remnant of an old fish and chip shop that was once below it, or an old night club, or it's a subliminal type advert by the Isle of Wight car ferry to get you to wander trancelike into their office asking for tickets to the 'land of smiles' which I've occasionally heard the Isle of Wight described as. But until there's evidence exposing it as a cynical capitalist mind game, I will continue to view it as a lovely symbol of hope that there's life after shopping at Gunwharf :)