Yesterday I watched from my window a helicopter filming my neighbourhood being looted, and a couple of shops burning down, and the TV was showing the same from a different angle. There was a fat black plume of smoke rising, and people were evacuated over the roof across the street.
A woman stopped under our window on the way to the supermarket, with her child and her shopping trolley. She asked if the shop was closed. We looked from our balcony at the clump of riot police around the entrance. "Yeah, it's closed," said my housemate.
"It's kind of being looted", I said.
She shook her head. "I'll just go down the other way then", she said.
"The other way is on fire", I said.
"Would you like some eggs and bread?" said my housemate.
"Buses and houses and cars" garbled the child, much animated.
"Yeah, you got it," we said.
"Are you sure all the shops are closed?" asked the woman.
The shop the looters burned was a lingerie shop. Selling bras and such. In Clapham they burned a party shop, amongst other things. I guess they thought that would be funny. I guess they burned buses because they are big and easy to light up. I guess they were having fun.
Everyone I know got home safe, although it took some time for some, and we've got our brooms at the ready. This is our home, too, and we will not have it trashed.
Today has been quiet.
Simon shut the shop and we sat by the road, getting occasional warnings about mobs advancing, none of them turned out to be true.
There are people out, joking with the police and saying they'll tell off those kids if they get rude again. My housemate is baking scones, and I'm working on my comic.