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the lunch-hour of extraordinary coats

What a very strange lunch-hour. We sat in a coffee shop I don't much like but Damian does, Lalage and I stumbling out of a traumatic meeting with our perpetually brain-storming boss, Damian fresh from a happy time with his designers, and Adrian having been a bit cooped up for a week (for complicated reasons, he's been staying in his office a lot) chirpy from having mailed off his work for the week, all ready to leave town for an ex-girlfriend weekend. We sat in the coffee-bar, eating indifferent sandwiches and talking crap about friends and newspapers and things like you do and every other person who walked past the window seemed to be wearing an astouding coat; fluffy, furry, frilly, multicoloured, multi-textured, red, black, grey, green, combinations of all of those, and these weren't the sort of people you'd expect to see wearing fancy coats, no scads of goths or drama students, just ordinary women in extraordinary coats.

Then we ran into Alex, whose coat was quite restrained today, but whose growing-out dye-job is fading strangely. He took off his sunglasses. "Are his eyes always that pale?" asked Damian, afterwards. We don't often see Alex during the day.