Friday 7 June 2013
Just before 05:45 Mr Trimot is reversing his car off the driveway. The sunlight is streaming through the bathroom of the Old Man’s house and onto the landing, as it was earlier this week.
Shortly after 07:00 a little black-and-white cat crosses the street, from the Efords’ driveway. It pauses in the middle of the road, looks to its left an angle of about 45 degrees, then after a few seconds it continues its walk across.
Josh Wheeler is wearing a red pullover, a hood and narrow cape [!] both of which are blue, and dark-grey shorts; Maud is wearing an off-white cardigan and a pink skirt. Mrs Wheeler is wearing her dark suit, with a red blouse.
At 08:18 a fortyish man is standing on the Efords’ driveway, looking towards the school-house garden and rubbing or scratching his head as though trying to wake himself up. He is bald on top, and he is wearing a short-sleeve red polo-shirt and dark-grey trousers. Not long after that, he is wandering about on the driveway, with a mobile to his right ear. The little silver MPV is parked nose uphill just above the Efords’ driveway.
Mrs Pavane has parked nose downhill alongside number 33. A couple of minutes later, Partner’s car approaches from the direction of George Street, and drives past the Old Man’s house.
Then I see Tiny Boy standing on the pavement at about the mid-point of Vinnie’s long hedge, in front right profile. He is wearing a dark anorak open at the front, with a blue pullover and a white polo-shirt under it — and shades with very dark, round lenses. The frames seem to be of red or purple plastic. Tiny Boy is not speaking, and he is not showing any particular emotion, he is simply waiting. Then he turns to face uphill, and Partner and Small Boy descend the pavement towards him. Tiny Boy turns again, and starts walking downhill. Small Boy isn’t wearing shades, and neither boy is carrying anything — Partner is carrying Small Boy’s book-bag with his left hand. Partner has adopted his usual steady pace; Small Boy and Tiny Boy pick up speed, and are ahead of him as they reach Vinnie’s garden-gates and short hedge.
The boys cross the street without Partner. Small Boy reaches the far pavement between the nose of the little silver MPV and the nose of Mrs Port’s car — he slips sideways through the gap, facing downhill, and Tiny Boy then does likewise. Partner crosses to below the tail of the MPV. His body-language suggests that he is not delighted with what the boys have just done, but I don’t see him tell them off.
As they descend to the middle entrance of the school, with Partner bringing up the rear, both boys make some attempt at martial arts moves — but much less than on Tuesday.
Two women are passing the Old Man’s house, probably on the pavement opposite, in the direction of the school. They are accompanied by children. One woman says to the other, in a contralto voice: “I don’t like this morning’s malarkey.” She continues her complaint after this.
Mrs TR walks uphill past Vinnie’s house, inboard of another woman. Miss TR and another child are just ahead of them. Mrs TR is also complaining in a contralto voice, but hers is loud and strident. In addition, she is pulling a sour face.
Partner returns to his car, which is parked alongside Vinnie’s long hedge and the lower third of the driveway. He has his smartphone to his right ear.
At the bookshop, I encounter a dark-haired woman about six foot tall, very rounded of body but solid rather than flabby. She is about thirty years old. Her male companion is about fifteen years older. He is not as tall, and not as fat.
After returning from Cheerful Market, I trim the borders where the paths run alongside the rockery. It has been sunny all morning.
Myra has parked alongside the Old Man’s garden-gate. She doesn’t have the baby with her.
Partner has parked alongside the lower part of the school-house garden and the school-house path. Is there someone in the fps? Partner sets off for the middle entrance of the school.
On her way back to her car, Myra stops by the Efords’ driveway to chat with another woman. Myra’s son and the woman’s son are with them. Both boys are dressed similarly — it is hard to tell which is which.
Partner has the nrd of his car quite wide open, and is interacting with someone inside — presumably Tiny Boy — but he doesn’t lean in. He drives off past the Old Man’s house, going fairly quickly. After that, Myra also has the nrd of her car open, but I don’t see her son.
At about 14:10, two women in late middle age, and another who is 35-plus, come out of number 6 to a little light-colour hatchback which is parked part-way onto the pavement. The younger woman exchanges kisses with the older two, who then get into the car via the driver’s door and fpd. While the car is still stationary, the younger woman starts waving goodbye. She is wearing a grey short-sleeve top. After the car departs, the younger woman crouches at the base of the wall and works her way uphill to the driveway. Perhaps she is weeding, or applying herbicide. Then she returns indoors.
A father walks up Acacia Grove with his tiny son piggyback. The man is wearing a green T-shirt. A few minutes later, they descend Acacia Grove on the near pavement. The father is grimacing, as his son is grabbing his ears (or is he kicking him?) — but apart from that, the boy is behaving well, and is very calm. The father is bald, and the son has dark hair. I can’t identify the object that the man is carrying, but the boy has in one hand what looks like a sizeable tube of Smarties.
Not long before 14:40 Mr JG is in his back garden, on a recliner, with one arm over his face to shield it from the sun.
A little black car has parked where the the Wormwoods’ car is usually to be seen.
Mrs Oldgreen’s car approaches from the direction of George Street at a minute or two before 15:00, and parks alongside the school precinct and the lowest part of the school-house garden.
A sporty red Zero has parked alongside the Old Man’s front side lawn. The driver, a solidly-built man wearing a blue polo-shirt, is on the phone when he gets out. His voice gives me the impression that he’s not all that bright. He is complaining about: “…that ffffing kid…”. After uttering another ffffing, he crosses diagonally to the far side of Acacia Grove.
Towards 15:12, Mrs Oldgreen drives off past the Old Man’s house.
Two women are ascending past Vinnie’s long hedge. At least one of them has a push-chair, and with them there are at least two children on foot. “’urry up, Ella!” says one of the women.
Partner has parked opposite the school, between the middle entrance and the lower entrance.
A grey BMW is at the kerb by the left-hand side of the Old Man’s front lawn. The car’s engine is running — it sounds like a diesel. There is a schoolboy in the fps, and the fpw is at least partly open. Then Miss Kellner walks past Vinnie’s short hedge, crosses to the nose of the BMW, acknowledges the people in the car, and passes along the car’s nearside. I don’t see her get in — presumably she does so via the nrd. The BMW must be the replacement for the Kellner family’s cream- or custard-coloured Zero.
Partner drives off in the direction of Cypress Crescent.
Just after 15:50 an ice-cream van drives past the Old Man’s house, playing Yankee Doodle. Minutes later I hear it again, further away.
As 16:00 approaches, Mrs Pavane’s car is still alongside number 33. Mr JG is no longer on his back garden, but Mr & Mrs GS and Miss GS are on their back garden.
Twenty or thirty minutes later, I go out to re-mow the rear half of the side lawn, the front side lawn and the front lawn.
Towards 20:20, Mr Trimot is on his driveway, washing his car. He is using a bucket and a sponge.