Monday 3 September 2012

The New Park

The New Park

(C) Sam Liddicott 2004

As we got near the park, my mother started to walk in the other direction, taking me with her.

This wasn't right; she had promised me that I could go to the park in the afternoon if I behaved in the morning, and I had behaved. I hadn't played with the scissors and cut the curtains, or got my shoes muddy when I played outside. I read my books quietly and put them away again, and I had eaten all my bread at lunchtime without complaining.

I had behaved, but just as we arrived at the park she started taking me somewhere else. I protested with a yell.

"Be quiet!" she said abruptly, which surprised me because my mother had been in a good mood when we set out. I was hoping we could stay longer at the park because it was sunny, and mum could sit on the bench and read her book.

"I want to go to the park, you said I could..." - it was worth a try, but she didn't seem to be in the mood. Why had she changed so suddenly?

I looked behind me towards the park as my mother dragged me along. There were some boys standing by the the red bus shelter in a group as they often did. I'd seen them before so I think they live nearby. One of them is called Harry. Maybe they were waiting to catch a bus to see their grandma, like we do with when dad has to stay at work late.

My mother dragged me on, still hurrying. I twisted my head as far as I could to see behind me. There was broken glass about the pavement. That was not unusual, sometimes the park had glass in it from broken bottles. I saw a broken window once. My big cousin Jamie kicked his leather football through it. He was not supposed to use his leather football in the garden. His dad had told him again and again.

Just as my mother dragged me round the corner I noticed that the side of bus shelter was broken. That must be where the glass had come from. It looked as if someone had spilt red paint on it.

“Where are we going, mum?” I asked.

“We're going to a different park today,” she said.

That was good news, and I began to walk a little faster. I wondered if the new park would have the same sort of swings as the old one; but best of all, on the way, I saw an ambulance. It had its lights flashing and it made the noise that makes the cars get out of the way, but they turned those off when it went round the corner.

The new park was bigger than the old one, but it was quite far away so we came home on the bus.
On the way home I asked my mother where she thought the ambulance went. She said she expected it had gone to help some people who had hurt themselves.

Mum said we can go to the new park again sometimes, but not every day.

1 comment:

  1. This is made up of fragments of my own experiences walking with my mum

    It conveys the lack of understanding children have of the surroundings and what affects their life, and the positive changes that come of it.

    All the parts are real, but the whole of it is not.