I am drawn as always to the river. Today I feel daring and go for a walk. I take great care and make sure that no one's around and then I casually step through a gap in the high iron railings on Clydebrae Street and keep walking briskly along the banks of the River Clyde. I never fully enjoy this when I'm on my own. I'm always on edge, glancing round and wondering how the devil I will get back out again if the boys come. And yet, this nervous tension is what gives the experience an extra dimension.
Anyway, the view across the graving docks is worth it, and across the river to the tall ship and quaint little Partick, and further on down to a mass of buildings and bridges that aren't worth discerning. If I had the nerve, I would sit here for hours, imagining past times of industry and the teeming life that surged around these now bleak, watery chasms.
The boys have two white plastic garden chairs on the bridge by their dookit. I'd love to sit there at my leisure, but sadly, I don't think they'd welcome me. They've got the prime spot in all of Govan. Maybe I'll work up my courage one day and get pals with them. I'll just go up to them, as they sit in the sun or the chittering cold, their hoods up no matter the weather, drinking cheap wine and smoking stuff, and I'll ask if I can sit there and enjoy the grand panorama. And once we're good friends I'll tell them about the boys from the generation before mine who used to hang out by this river too. How they worked in the evenings on an old cabin cruiser they called "The Red Witch" and how they never managed to get it sea-worthy - as far as I know - but had a great time trying.
I always have an eerie feeling when I come here alone. I can't decide if it's my fear of the living, or the presence of the dead.