1. Normally at weekends when Alec wakes I suggest strongly that he might like to 'go and find Daddy.' This morning I am wide awake but he is snoring quietly, so I go and find Daddy myself. As I come in, sleepy Nick says: 'Alec?'
2. Nick helps Alec to draw a scary face on the paper bag that the potatoes came in. They put it over the scooter handlebars and chase each other round the kitchen.
3. To escape. The boys are still sleeping off lunch though it's nearly dark. I only mean to go down to the bins (we've been putting it off because the road is so slidy in the snow) but I keep on walking back past our front door. I'm not sure where to go and end up in the park. The snow is already bruised and crushed but I haven't completely missed the magic. I find a piece of pristine lawn and walk across it, and note that three of the four baby swings are still covered in snow. The smell of coal smoke is a pleasing dirty contrast to the clean winter air and the clean snow colours.