I had to stop to look at the Moon. Above the rooftops, the clouds were scudding by as if they’d been fast-forwarded. I felt as if I were standing in a station when an express train was going through.

There had already been one moment of drama on my short walk home from the supermarket, when I nearly fell into a hole left by one of the utility companies, exposed because the barrier had lifted off the pavement and into the road. Now, I felt I should be blown home to the strains of the storm music in The Barber of Seville, if not The Flying Dutchman.

The wind had become a Lord of Misrule. Empty cans danced along the street as if possessed by some impish spirit. Across the capital, the sirens of the emergency services called to each other, like exotic birds in a rainforest. Plastic sheets flapped on scaffolding. Nature had suspended the health-and-safety rules.

I know that weather is only properly done in the country. There, wind turbines, as if consumed by rage at their own futility, burst into spontaneous flame. But in London, a mighty wind blows the cobwebs away. If only it could carry a few other things away with it, too.