‘From what I’ve heard,’ Mel said, still annoyed with him, ‘Brazil is the only emerging country in South America and they speak Portuguese there.’
‘Whatever. I’m quite sure that my languages degree will be quite acceptable.’ Craig told her.
Mel scowled at him.
‘What do you make of the council’s plans for redevelopment, Mr Harrington?’ Craig asked to change the subject.
Brian was saved from replying by Jack’s arrival. He redirected the subject to Jack’s team’s success the previous day. Jack was a six-foot something rugby player who owned and managed a gym on the far side of the town.
‘I believe that you ran in two tries yourself,’ Brian said.
Craig said nothing further. His attempts at conversation hadn’t gone down particularly well up to that point, and Jack was twice his size – he definitely didn’t want to get on his wrong side. He remained quiet throughout the meal. Jack was complimenting Mel on her success and, when Brian told Jack what Craig had said, Jack glowered at him. Jack shrank beneath that baleful gaze.
‘Coming from someone who’s still unemployed, that’s rich,’ he said, ‘You’ve done great, Sis. You take no notice. I think that this news will just be the start of a great career for you.’
After the meal, Craig and Mel went for a walk during which they had a frank disagreement. They meandered along a track that led to a viewpoint both over the town and, in the opposite direction, towards the hills. Craig told her that he wouldn’t be going with her to her home again. He felt that he had been belittled, and he blamed her for not standing up for him. He said that her family were too bourgeois and, anyway, what would an architect or a rugby player know about trends in language teaching?
Mel was incredulous – she told him off for accusing her of not listening to him and of lying that he had told her about his university acceptance. She asked him why he hadn’t even told her that he’d intended to apply. In truth she didn’t really believe that he had applied. She made it clear that she was angry that he’d tried to belittle her success. She made it clear too that if he didn’t like her family he should find somebody else – a girl from a more working-class background. When they parted for the afternoon, the tension between them had still not been resolved and they made no arrangement to meet again.
As she walked home, Mel was seething and remembering what Stacy had said to her. Even if Craig were to apologise and they were to get back together, she’d be monitoring his behaviour.
When she got back, she found that her family had, similarly, not been pleased by Craig’s behaviour and they asked what she saw in him. She thanked them and was in a better frame of mind to face her new job the following morning.
The photo that I’ve chosen today is the fourth of the series that I’ll be posting in this part of my daily blog in this part of the page. As I said previously, the series is based on a walk that I did on the 19th April along the bank of the Leeds to Liverpool canal between Burscough Bridge and the ‘Ring O’Bells’ pub just over a mile away. I did the walk in both directions, accompanied by my daughter’s dog, Ted. I’ll start with a shot I took at Burscough Bridge wharf.
The image shows a bridge and its shadows and reflections in the canal. The EXIF data are as follows: Camera used was my 24 MP Pentax KP cropped sensor camera paired with a Pentax 28-105 mm f/3.5-5.6 full-frame lens. The shutter speed was 1/80 secs @ f/8 and 34 mm. The ISO was 100. The shot was handheld.