|Summer - a time of mellow fruitfulness ... RUBBISH! Whoever wrote that obviously didn't have kids. Nor did they live in this neighbourhood.
Sigourney, aged five and Logan, seven, woke with the sun. Around five in the morning according to the alarm clock. Chaos reigned if no parental control was in place, so no holiday lay-ins. Breakfast toast fell to the floor - jam side down of course. Murphy's law. He obviously had kids too.
The back door was opened to allow the escape of the stifling heat. Typical, a sudden gust blew the fly curtain open and a swarm of the blighters headed for the sticky floor. A game of fly tennis followed, not very successfully. The kids thought it was hilarious to see a grown woman swatting away. And the flies ducked and dived and survived the onslaught.
There was no garden to speak of, just a small area of concrete surrounded by high walls. No room for a kick about, and even the skipping rope got caught on the clothes line. And the kids were itching for the great outdoors. Only one choice, the local park. That is, if there were no gangs hanging about. And you did have to watch out for used needles, discarded overnight.
Only half way there and our progress was halted by police tape. Emergency vehicles were everywhere. There was a large sign, asking for witnesses of a shooting the night before. A shooting? In this area? It was rough, but not that rough. A newspaper fluttered from where it had been discarded, near the bin, but not quite in it.
The headlines left no doubt. Six dead. A bloke with a shotgun killed his mother then went on a random spree, ending with him killing himself in the very park we had been heading for. Flowers were already heaping up at the side of the road. No one was playing in the park today.
What do you do with two young children on a hot summers day when it's not safe to go out?