Every Tuesday I drive my son (and myself) to music lessons. Some part en route takes us through a less affluent area. It is just this long road with mostly terraced houses on both sides. I suppose some of them are also council houses.
I have to firmly keep my eyes on the road because it is so easy to let them drift.
Some of the houses are boarded up, some are burnt out, no glass in the windows anymore, rubbish all around the house, long grass – not a pretty sight, really sad and dilapidated. Some are skeletons of what they used to be… because in sharp contrast you see beautifully and lovingly looked after houses, painted in pretty colours with pretty flowers in the front and the lawn short and green.
The people are just as extraordinary interesting. Young girls, I mean mothers, in pj-bottoms pushing buggies, other dressed up to the nines with loads of fake tan but less clothes and always high heels – wandering the pavements.
Every now and then you’ll see some ponies and many dogs….
I often wander what my son sees. He is not really interested in the people, well except if they look really weird and wonderful and different, but the burnt-out houses intrigues him. He always wants to know why, why did it burn out, did it happen while they were asleep, did they forget something on the stove, did they leave a candle on? Did someone die? ‘And mom, what would you take with you if our house burns down…?’
Within a few months I will really have to focus on the road because then some of the houses on that street will have there Christmas decorations up. And they are famous (read OTT!) for these decorations. They make the newspaper! Definitely not a few shy coloured lights here and there. No no, no they go all the way. Statues of big fat plastic father Christmases, reindeers, snowmen, any decoration slightly resembling Christmas will find a place in the small gardens alight – coloured, white, sparkling, you name it!
But then this makes our trip to the music lessons so much more interesting, so I wouldn’t want to miss it!
On top of it, it fires (no pun intended) my son’s creative mind!