January 1985. We are sat around the brown table on Justin’s coach at Membury Services. It is cold and very early. We are sat down to eat the cornfl akes Cornfl ake just maced from the Total garage. Most of the rest of the convoy is still here, parked around.
Justin, his blackened rainbow scarf looping from neck to boot, heaves up the plastic fl agon someone’s just fi lled at the toilet taps and douses his cereal. He passes the water to Posie, who passes it to Cornfl ake, who passes it to JonnyBoy.
I can feel the damp of the chair through my pants. I can see my breath. The inside of the window is dripping condensation. Is it really too much to ask to have some fucking milk?
Soft-spoken JonnyBoy passes me the water – “Here y’are, Si” – and then busies himself balancing a teaspoon between two empty mugs.
“Is it really too much to ask to have some fucking milk?”
“Jesus H. Christ.” Justin’s spoon stops halfway to the bowl. He sneers and shows his tea-stained teeth.
Posie, JonnyBoy and Cornflake are still.
“I don’t think I’m being unreasonable. For breakfast. On our cornflakes. Some milk. That’s all I’m saying . . .”
“Jesus H. fucking Christ.”
“‘Oh, wouldn’t it be nice to have milk on our cornflakes? Wouldn’t it be nice to have a mug of spunky Horlicks when Mummy tucks us in with our fucking teddies?’ You fucking cunt.”
“You and your fucking milk. On your fucking cornflakes.”
JonnyBoy and Cornflake look into their bowls. Posie props her head on her palm. Justin’s eyes narrow to black under his lined, browned lids.
I assume that horrible pink wizz has run out.