Tuesday 25 November 2014
Not long after 07:55 the Wheelers’ Bonsai is parked alongside number 35. All three of them are are already out of the car. Maud is wearing her red anorak; she descends the far pavement inboard of her mother but close by her side. Josh is further inboard, and is lagging by three or four yards.
Beyond the left-hand side of the school-house roof, a plume of water-vapour is rising.
Mr Port seems to have just finished de-icing Mrs Port’s car. A woman — it must be Mrs Trimot or Miss Trimot — is de-icing the rear screen of Miss Trimot’s car.
By 08:00, the black bins have been emptied.
Shortly before 08:05 Mrs Wheeler, with a purposeful stride, is ascending by the upper part of the school-house garden, heading towards her car. She walks past a little red hatchback that belongs to a young woman who works at Acacia Primary. Mrs Wheeler’s anorak is electric-green; her trousers and gloves are black.
A silver Ultra mk 2 approaches from the direction of George Street, and parks alongside the middle part of the Old Man’s front lawn. Then a black Ultra mk 1 arrives from the direction of Cypress Crescent, and parks alongside numbers 33 and 29. I don’t see anyone get out of either car.
Mrs PP parks her car in the spot where Miss Trimot’s car was earlier, but pointing in the opposite direction. Master PP is in the front passenger seat.
Shortly before the start of the afternoon school-run, I decide that there is just enough time for me to go and pick up some fallen leaves from the garden. After some minutes, I see the Pigeon Lad who has paused for a rest alongside the junction-box. A plastic carrier-bag is dangling from his right hand.
At the lower edge of the front lawn, I pick up a tiny plastic doll, which I put onto the top of the garden wall, and a paper bookmark (hand-coloured and -decorated) which I bring indoors.
During the school-run, Mrs Pointer’s car is parked alongside number 35. I see Mr Lurch’s car park this side of it, with the B-post of Mr Lurch’s car about where the Pigeon Lad paused for a rest. Later I see that Mrs Mustard has parked alongside the Old Man’s garden-gate and front side lawn, and that the Peppers’ silver Escargot has parked this side of Mr Lurch’s car.
Mrs Pointer returns to her car. As she ascends past the school-house garden, Miss Pointer is inboard of her and Master Pointer outboard. Mrs Pointer has dull-metallic-blonde hair, which as usual is pulled back very tightly and arranged in a very short ponytail. When the Pointers are at the car, I can hear Mrs Pointer’s voice. She seems displeased with her daughter, but says nothing further. In her left hand, Mrs Pointer has a pink water-bottle, held horizontally. She does not release her iron grip on her son’s left hand. The boy is wearing a blue-black anorak and a bobble-hat of a similar colour; he looks tired and bemused. Mrs Pointer ushers her daughter into the car via the nrd; then she takes her son round the tail of the car to the ord — still maintaining that iron grip!