A crow was pecking at the basketball sized piece of scrunched up fish and chip paper in the road. A car approached and the crow picked up the paper in its beak and flew off over the houses with it. Later, on the same street, I saw a woman in a spangley lilac sari and headscarf ensemble hoovering the pavement outside her house with big upright Dyson.
I was sat smoking on the steps at the entrance to the park opposite the post office with Michael. I told him about the woman I'd seen hoovering the pavement and he said he'd once seen a man watering his garden despite the fact he'd paved over it several years earlier. I suggested the man might simply have been cleaning the paving, but Michael said that when he'd asked him what he was doing, the man had said "watering the flowers". At this point in the conversation, a sparrow flew down and landed in the gap between us on the step – about a foot away from each of us. Michael hadn't noticed it so I caught his eye, said "Aye-up, who's this?" and glanced down at the bird. Michael caught site of the sparrow and started with a small yelp of surprise. The sparrow flew off and Michael said "I fucking hate birds".
A group of school children passed me in the street. They all had their coats over their heads to block the glare of the sun on their phone screens.