Last Friday after we picked up the children from nursery, we drove to the site of the countryside show to drop off our entries in the Horticultural competition. When we arrived at the marquee, we found it wasn't entirely ready. We set down the entries we could place correctly, and I went outside with Humuhumu to have a look around the nearby stalls that were being set up.
We were looking at a group of metal sculptures when a Range Rover pulled up. It stopped suddenly next to us, and I became aware that we were being watched. I turned around and faced the occupants - all middle-aged white males - who were staring at us. I started to smile when I clocked their expressions. They were furious. Tense with rage.
Two things happened very quickly. First, Humuhumu started to run off, forcing me to call to her loudly (so they heard me speaking English). Second, the bloke came out of the marquee carrying Keiki and started walking toward me.
The Range Rover slowly moved off, with all three men still watching us.
Maybe this doesn't sound frightening or intimidating. I can assure you, however, that it was. I am 90% certain that if those men had not heard me speaking English and seen my white male English partner, we would have been in trouble.
I'm disabling comments on this entry because I can't deal with anyone else's feelings about this right now. I will, especially, have no patience with anyone telling me that everything's going to be fine in the next few months. It's absolutely not fine. None of this is fine. It's going to be awful. The agonisingly slow economic recovery we were experiencing before 23 June, which gave a glimmer of hope that austerity might be eased in the coming months, is completely gone. Austerity is at the root of much of the discontent that drove the referendum vote, and it is going to stay with us, and it will get worse. And so will the racism and the xenophobia.
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