We often watch him with his little daughter. He and his partner are Dutch. He does the parenting. I think she is an academic at the University. He has a loping walk, she is often running ahead, turning to see if he is following. He is relaxed, I’ve only once heard him raise his voice to the little one. I like him. I like the Dutch. I have good memories of them. We say hello now and then when we pass by their flat with its mountains of washing drying outside. When it has been hot they’ve blown up a little paddling pool for the girl. Her shrieks of pleasure are carried up to our upper window. We saw him yesterday and said hello. He said something about a comet. I’ve been watching for it, he said. It is supposed to be visible at night and in the morning but the skies have been so cloudy. He laughed then. I wanted to be an astronomer, he said.

By Ellen Bell

Artist and writer currently living in Aberystwyth.