I've been transported back to 1992, I'm a size ten and work in a big bookshop called Dillons in Watford Town Centre. My hair is sort of longish brown, and I wear it tied up with my bookish glasses. Sometimes I leave my glasses off to look more attractive, but struggle to recognise people without them.
I arrive at Dillons aged 19 after one year at Uni, which was just too much, too young for me, and a couple of months as a pizza restaurant waitress where I became a little manically obsessed about serving customers quickly, and thus probably was quite annoying to work with. I took a Christmas job at Dillons- ended up staying for two years, and wore my striped uniform shirt, undone over a long sleeved t-shirt. I can't remember what trousers I used to wear then, although I know I was over hot pants but not totally over shorts.
I worked at on the first floor at the back of the shop, with a man called Chris, who was the supervisor. He used to wear red jumpers and smoke matching red Marlboro's. There was Tim Cater, and Caroline, both Uni graduates passing time in the shop.
At the top of the stairs there were sections about flower decorating and cooking. A grown up lady called Caroline was in charge of these, and was very, um accessorised. She worked with a cheerful young man called Luke, who was I think the supervisor.
The staff downstairs seemed to change more frequently, but Craig, the floor manager was always there, as was Tanya, his deputy (or was it the other way around). Tanya used to brush her hair every break time, and was the first woman I'd ever met who did not use hair products or was styled. She was possibly a kind of hippie being from Australia, and once said she thought incest between twins was probably acceptable. I am still shocked by this statement 16 years later.
I fell in love with Nick from downstairs, over Spitting Image puppets in the window. He broke my heart by sleeping with a cocktail waitress in America. I never forgave him.
Later, I got back with my crazy first year at Uni boyfriend and got caught snogging him outside the shop once when I was supposed to be already at work. That was the day that one side of my face rose up in high red weals. After being sent home on the bus, I visited the doctor, who diagnosed flea bites from sleeping on the dog's cushion.
1992 - with lunch from bhs, cigarettes on the bench, beer after work, purple DM's, opaque tights, The Guardian and New Statesman and Society, the Diceman, 1984 and CND Christmas cards.
What a blast - and hello to Luke, from that time who I have just unexpectedly bumped in to miles from Watford in our local nursery.