#208: Orpington

The cigarette in her hand is burning to the end. The baby is wailing in the back and little Kieran is smashing trains into trains, like a new found terrorist. It’s loud and hot and sticky. The windows are down and the cars ahead of us aren’t moving.

Up ahead a lorry has jack knifed. No one is injured; the driver has got away unscathed. There is an ambulance technician waiting patiently with the driver to make sure he is not in shock. The driver is agitated; his boss will be unhappy. This could be his license. This incident could be his undoing.

It had snowed earlier in the day and the ice has now taken over the road.

“What’s happening, Mummy?” says little Kieran in the back of the car, as another train fake explodes into another one.

“There’s been an accident. Will you look after Freya while I speak to this policeman?”


“We might be stuck here for the night but they’ll find us somewhere to sleep. You need to behave, ok?”


“Now put that blanket over your sister and stop blowing up your trains.”