The blind lady, having measured all of the windows, flicked past the samples from which I was intending to make my final selection, saying oh, they’re a bit tacky aren’t they…the kind of things the Asians choose. And later, when I explained that I was glad she had decided not to postpone our agreed meeting time because I’d already spent half the week waiting around for the oven guy (and no, he still hasn’t come) she said well, it wouldn’t really worry me, I don’t like to bake, I don’t really like to cook and then gave a loud laugh and looked at me in a meaningful way before she said I know! An Italian lady who doesn’t like to cook! and then told me a lot of details about her home life and the good care she takes of her sons. While my own sat in front of PlaySchool making demands such as ‘more toast please!’.

I ordered the blinds anyway, because I have used the company before and they are reliable and their prices are good and they do what they say they will do.

On the tram, the man across from me says – after my boy has done the ticket and told the whole tram that if there’s a red cross that means you’ve put it up the wrong way – I used to work for this mob I smile and nod, though I am expecting some long story about the way things used to be in the days when the young ones stood up to give you their seat, but he says until the accident, and the first thing I knew about the deaths was when the policeman said ‘you’ve been cleared’. And then he shakes his head and he looks at my little boy and says and all I had was glass in my eye.