Friday, 6 July 2007


So the new smokefree legislation has hit the streets of Newcastle as it has the rest of the England and the UK. In town on Saturday I noticed more people smoking than usual on the streets; I wasn't sure if I was seeing them more than I usually would because I was aware that this was the last day they'd be able to smoke inside, or if there really were more of them.

Now, walking round town on my lunch break, I see more and more of them. Groups of smokers hanging around in doorways, breathing smoke into my face. Walking through Haymarket bus station, no staff in sight to challenge them, and when the smoker is a late-teen-early-twenties-lad who looks rough as anything? I'm not going to challenge him myself.

Going to the health food shop on Princess Square the other lunchtime, there were tons of them. A group of five on and round one bench, four cluster round another; the sun shines and they sit, chatting, eating their lunch, smoking their lunchtime cigarettes.

It's the only time I find myself jealous.

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