Tuesday 30 April 2013
On arrival at the Old Man’s house, I park alongside Vinnie’s long hedge, then go and open the gates of the Old Man’s driveway.
At 11:18 the Kulaks’ car approaches from the direction of Cypress Crescent, and parks alongside number 33. When Mabel exits via the driver’s door, she looks a bit chubby.
A mother ascends the far pavement carrying at her left front a boy aged about three. He is wearing a red pullover. The boy kisses her at least twice; she seems pleased, but lowers him to the ground alongside the Ports’ paved front garden. They cross the road, diagonally, when they get to the driveway of the house above the Kingdoms’ house.
Mabel has driven off by the time that I see Mrs TR ascend past Vinnie’s garden-gates and long hedge; her small blonde daughter is at her right hand. Mrs TR looks rather tired.
At 12:16 Mrs Oldgreen’s car approaches from the direction of George Street, turns, and parks by the upper part of the school-house garden.
For lunch, I go to Sandbank Shoals. A young woman and a toddler are the only people on the customer side of the counter when I arrive, and they are just about to leave as I enter. Young Girl is the only person serving; there are two women, one of them fat, in the kitchen. On my way upslope to the shop, I overtook an old lady with a walking-stick; she now enters the shop, and asks to speak to Big Man. Young Girl tells her that Big Man is away on holiday. As I am leaving the shop, the old lady places her order.
The fish and chips are not very warm (no doubt this is not a busy day), but they taste good.
The tree in the rockery of the Old Man’s house is finally budding.
So far, the day has been sunny.
A little before 14:50 a silver-blue Nilpferd descends Acacia Grove and parks alongside Vinnie’s garden-gates. As the driver’s window is fully down when the car is parked, I can see the female driver at the wheel, gazing at the phone in her right hand. She is wearing glasses with red or brown frames.
Shortly before 15:00 the Ojays’ car is parked alongside number 35, part-way onto the pavement. The Wormwoods’ car is just this side of it.
The driver of the Nilpferd is still looking at her phone. It is not until 15:08 that she sets off for the school — she slams the driver’s door shut.
Scarlett arrives from the direction of George Street, and parks alongside the CJs’ house, just this side of their garden-gate. On foot she heads towards the school at a steady pace, returning with the boys ten minutes later. With her right forearm, Scarlett is now holding against her waist what looks like a medium-brown leather attaché-case — is this Small Boy’s new book-bag? She has a heavy application of pale make-up on her face. As the three of them walk by the CJs’ fence, Small Boy is several paces behind Scarlett, with his hood up.
Scarlett reverses a little, then performs a quick three-point turn. Her first forward movement is towards the driveway of the taxi-driver’s house, and the nose of the car encroaches all the way across the pavement. She zooms off in the direction of George Street, where she turns left.
Mrs Ojay, whose dark-blonde hair is arranged in a ponytail, gets into her car via the driver’s door before Scarlett and the boys reappear.
During the afternoon school-run, the sky is overcast but the light is clear. Later in the afternoon, the sky is still overcast and the light is not as good.
At 16:15 or so, a Renault MPV is parked alongside number 35, part-way onto the pavement. The driver is female, thirtyish, with a light-brown ponytail. A blond boy aged about six is the front-seat passenger. They get out, and the driver retrieves a wheeltrim from the roadway by the right-hand side of the Old Man’s front lawn. The boy stays on the pavement. The wheeltrim is of the multi-spoke type, and it is lying decorative side up. Now I realise that the wheeltrim is missing from the nearside rear wheel of the Renault. I presume that there has been an accident — but I see no sign of another car having been involved. Did the Renault simply hit the kerb and so dislodge the wheeltrim? Possibly the wheeltrim has rolled from the scene of the accident to the spot where I first see it. The woman puts the wheeltrim into the already-full load-area of her car.
When I walk past the Goldsteins’ house on the way to TeraGroce, AFAICS the living-room and front bedroom have been emptied of furniture.
At about 19:15 it is sunny for just a few minutes.