African Women Voices

One day at The Guardian

King’s Cross is a busy station. People are running from the left to the right as crazy marbles in a pinball machine. Some are dressed with ties and suits, other in high hills. Some of them are carrying their breakfasts, other their newspapers. Everyone is so busy, I don’t even try to ask for help finding 90, York Way. I wouldn’t do it anyway since I am more the kind of person who gets lost and enjoys it.

Besides, York Way is not difficult to find. Somehow I follow the crowd. As creepy as it may sound, I follow one lady in particular. She has the attitude of someone who is going in my direction. Middle aged, long blonde hair – though they went slightly grey, coffee in one hand and newspaper in the other, dressed as she was ready for a casual city safari, she does go in my direction.

I see the building from far away and all my enthusiasm turns into panic. The pavement now looks like a treadmill that is going to fast. Can we please slow down? As I pass by Kings Place, I envy people who enter in the glass building with confidence and calm.

How could I even think to miss my way? A huge window warn: the Guardianthe Observer in enormous letters. It looks so clean, clear and colourful. Even inside is like walking in the palace-version of the newspaper. Everything remind it: from the white background, to the colourful and stylish chair, to the ladies at the reception. Though, seeing all those people sitting with a broadsheet – the Guardian – in their hands is odd. But I can see someone entering trough the electronic gates with other papers.

Now I realise how wrong I was when I dressed up. In my mind the Guardian would be full of people in high hills and suits. Instead, Decca Aitkenhead is wearing a long hippy skirt with colourful flip-flop and the editor of the Family section was defined “Mr Relax” for his shorts and sneakers, by the Londoner sitting next to me.

We are maybe 20 people interested in journalism: lawyers, students, economists … and we meet the Guardians during the day, journalists who took sometimes to spend it with us. Also Alan Rusbridger – Editor-in-chief of the Guardian News Media, spends one hour of his time with us.

Going from a glass door to another they fill our, my brain with information, ideas, experiences. No break during the lunch break when I meet Chris Elliott, third Guardian Reader’s Editor.

At 5.30pm of June 27, my brain needs a break. Needs to breathe some empty air, with no genius molecules in it. I almost run away trough the escalator, but I’m just running from the building, time to breath and come back. Cause I’ll be back at the Guardian!

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This entry was posted on 16 September 2010 by in Comment and tagged , , , , , , , , .

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