Saturday 9 September.
I had arrived home from work at 4pm and convinced Skye that it would be a good idea to go to bed for a little nap.
“Buy, Mummy, it's daytime! Look there's the sunshine,” she argued pointing at the window.
“Yes, I know it's daytime, but tonight there is a big party down on the beach and if you don't sleep for a bit now you'll be too tired to go.” With a little more persuasion, she climbed into my bed and 20 minutes later was fast asleep. I decided to let her sleep for a couple of hours, so that we could stay out late at the festival. I sat down to relax with a book, a cup of tea and some secret chocolate that nobody knows I have.
Later, I woke her up and put some music on. I had put some jacket potatos in the oven, for dinner, not sure whether Carlo was coming straight home from work or stopping off at the bar. I didn't bother calling him, knowing that if he was really late he would let me know.
Skye and I danced around the living room, while deciding what to wear that evening. She pulled on her lilac ballerina tutu and pranced around on tiptoes, while I tried on the usual combinations of clothes that I am never quite satisfied with. I glanced at my watch, it was 8.20, the festivities started at 9pm and I wanted to be there. I took off the pink dress that I was probably never going to wear, and started looking for something else. My phone rang while Skye was changing into her preferred party outfit. I glanced at the screen and saw it was Carlo.
“Amore!” I said, “where are y...” He interrupted me before I could finish. “Nik, listen, I've come off my bike...outside the school.”
“Oh my God are you hurt?” I felt a chill run through me, but relised that if he was calling me it couldn't be too bad.
I told him I'd be there straight away. I pulled on my jeans and a top, yelled at Skye to put her shoes on. I was trembling, and a bit frantic, but I remembered to turn the oven off. I ran down the steps towards the road, pulling her with me. The walk up towards the school seemed to take forever. I am a fast walker, but pulling a three year old up a hill can not be done in a hurry.
As I arrived outside the school I saw his motorino lying on the road, there was a small crowd of onlookers to one side. I pushed my way through, pulling Skye up into my arms. He was lying on the side of the road, he looked pale and sweaty. There was a man from the Red Cross crouched down next to him. I scanned him for injuries and saw that his ankle was very swollen and grazed. He moved his arm and I saw that the skin from his elbows had been scraped away, from where he had landed on the road. “What hurts?” I asked him as I crouched down next to him. “Leg,” he grunted.
Various people were filling me in on the car that had pulled out, knocking him off his bike. The fact that they had stopped only to say that they had no time, they had to get to the airport. Somebody said that people had shouted to them not to go away, they couldn't just leave, but they drove off, anyway. Skye had seen the cuts on his ankle and became worried. I realised how distressing this could be for her, so I pulled her away and told her that Daddy had hurt his leg, but the Doctor was coming to make it better. I heard an ambulance approaching, and the crowd of people moved to one side. A lady with 2 other children gently took Skye aside so that I could go back to comfort Carlo.
The ambulance pulled up, siren blaring, lights flashing. A man tapped me on the shoulder and handed me a scrap of paper. “I saw everything, here's the licence plate of the car, and here's my phone number if you need me to be a witness.” The ambulance men were putting a makeshift splint on Carlo's leg, and suddenly he started fainting.
“Hey, Carletto! Wake up!” shouted the Red Cross man, tapping him lightly on the face, “Nicki, move that helmet, let him lie down .” I remembered bing told once that if there was a motorbike accident, you should never remove the helmet. Carlo's had already been taken off by someone. I moved it out of the way. He was lifted onto a stretcher and taken into the ambulance.