There is clapping outside and fireworks and it makes me mad because it’s not New Year or Chinese New Year or Bonfire Night. Fireworks are for celebrating and standing outside in huge freezing groups with a cup of beer and a vague sadness. Something about how big the sky is, and how quickly fires burn out.

My mum is in the bathroom and I shout through the wall “They’re cheering you!”


“The clapping.”

“Oh carers. Great.”

I hear the flush and the fwoom the boiler makes when the water runs more than twenty seconds. We don’t sing happy birthday. We don’t clap.




Also by Lydia,


LENT 2020