Sunday Bloody Sunday
What a lovely day Sunday was. Hot. Cloudless. All day. We started early and went to the flower market in Columbia Road in the East End. Good quality, wide variety, racks and racks of plants, low prices it’s a real market with as much Cockney spiel as one can digest. Loverly, oh yes will do really well in the shade, or if you like in the sun, fivver each, three for a tenner, look make up yer mind, only a few left. Most are deeply tanned from their winters in the Canary Islands or the Balearics. Many have gold chains, all have wonderful sparkle(they are all diamond geesers) and are seriously very knowledgeable. Its an annual event which for us heralds the official start of our summer.
And then a day eating and dozing in the garden. Me with a little hangover from the Arsenal triumph, Vivien with the added energy which she gets from having another forty plants to deal with. In the evening we watched the Young Musician of the Year and a film about Dylan Thomas’ last days. Sometimes the simple pleasures of a long marriage are just that,
But while we were smug in the warmth of a lovely day others were playing a very different game. In Huddersfield (near Leeds) Emma Mansell had broken up with the husband Stuart 18 months ago and taken up with a bit of a jack the lad Johnny Sutton. Their intense relationship was partly based on the pub where they met. She had two children and he one from a previous relationship. She had also lost a child to meningitis. To cement their relationship they had a six month old baby girl Elsie.
We don’t know what really happened but at 9.25pm while we were watching the Dylan film one of Emma’s children, Oscar aged nine ran out into the street. No doubt because of the warm day and it still just being light, there were folk around. The blood soaked little boy was screaming “I’ve been stabbed, someone help me, someone needs to go and help mummy.”
Well however the neighbours responded it was too late. Emma and died with one thrust of the vile dagger. Johnny was taken away with multiple stab wounds- none life threatening. Five children now have either lost a mother forever and a father for the next ten years. Their lives will be forever scarred by what may have been just another drink fuelled spat. The couple had a reputation of “falling out with each other after they had had a drink” said one neighbour. Others predictably rallied round and said that Emma was a “mum in a million”. No more.