Riches and Rags, a Day Trip to #Brighton

Brighton is a town of Colour

Today’s post is a recapture of a recent trip to Brighton. I’ve been visiting this town since my early teens, in fact it was 1980 when I was first captivated by the quirkiness of The Lanes.

The Heart of Brighton, leading to The Lanes

Nowadays, I treat myself to a mooch around this lovely seaside town at least once a year. With an ever growing array of amazing shops and restaurants, it never fails to amaze me. Brighton has it all. Added to the cornucopia of clothes shops, I spotted a shop selling traditional sweets, another selling vegan sweets, there were bespoke cakes and macaroons in every colour of the spectrum… It seems impossible to imagine so many temptations, which leaves me wondering if there is anything left to invent.

A traditional sweet shop

Julien Plumart, Brighton

As for the choice of food… cafés and booths sell just about everything from homemade cookies to noodle bowls. Mexican, Spanish, Thai, Vietnamese, Japanese, I could go on forever listing the choice of eateries but I eventually stumbled across a little French Bistro; a traditional 13th Century Fisherman’s cottage tucked away in the oldest part of The Lanes. It offers an array of fresh seafood and shellfish but all I cherished was a tureen of fish soup. Warming and delicious it was packed with succulent fish and shellfish and a portion of rustic french bread, perfect for a light lunch.

D’arcys Restaurant in the Lanes

But a town blighted by Poverty

As I explored the streets, enjoying the decadence, I could not ignore the number of homeless people scattered around the town. Sadly, rising homelessness is the one regrettable downside of this age and this government conveniently choose to ignore it. It’s all too easy for people to say “get a job, lazy scroungers,” but the truth is NO ONE will employ a homeless person. To qualify for any type of work, you need a fixed abode. But how can anyone at rock bottom climb their way out of this trap? Rents in the south have quadrupled in the last six years but wages have not.

The reason for their plight is often more complicated than people think. Many turn to drugs and alcohol but in some way, I can empathise… No one chooses this existence and will surely turn to anything to numb the harsh reality behind their broken lives.

Graffiti in Brighton

Graffiti in Brighton (interpret this as you will)

I don’t want to end on a depressing note but I will finish my saying that in my next novel (a work soon to be in progress), one of the main characters will start off as a homeless man before the suspense gets rolling… and that’s all I’m saying.

About Helen J. Christmas

I am an English author and have written a series of novels, titled 'Same Face Different Place. Beginnings is a gangland thriller set in the criminal underworld of 1970s London. The second Book 'Visions' is a psychological thriller, set in Kent; a mystery that ensnares the owners of an historic, English Country House. Book 3 Pleasures contains suspense, thrills and YA romance, set in a backdrop of organised crime and at the advent of the British rave culture. There are 2 final books in the series, Retribution (Phase One) and Retribution (End Game) where the saga reaches its dramatic conclusion.
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