Our own apartment at Drayton Park stood a mile to the north of the airport in a pleasant island of modern housing units, landscaped filling stations and supermarkets, shielded from thr distant bulk of London by an access spur of the Northern Circular motorway which flowed past us on its elegant concrete pillars...
I had been sitting in the same reclining chair on the veranda of our apartment, looking down through the anodized balcony units at the unfamiliar neighbourhood 10 storeys below.
This is puzzling... does such a place as Drayton Park exist a mile to the north of the airport? Certainly, West Drayton does... There is a Drayton Park in Islington. Is Ballard imagining a future upwardly mobile annex of West Drayton? Certainly the description of the balcony seems contemporary. I like the hint of bland Wordsworthian romance Ballard applies with subtle irony to the environs "pleasant islands of modern housing units" and the "northern circular motorway" with its "elegant concrete pillars"... in fact throughout the book I've always felt his great success was in creating a poetry of psychotic juxtaposition; the linguistic equivalent of the surrealist game "exquisite corpse".