R was in her pyjamas tonight. And we got several comments from passersby. Maybe because of the pyjamas? Maybe because it was a bit earlier than usual. The girls from the Deli wondered if people had written 'advent hopes' on the stars (nice idea: bank it for next year). I am glad they like it as they're in about the best position to take them all down if they don't! The second couple loved it too - and as she walked away she said 'thanks!' in a way you could tell she really appreciated what we were up to. So nice. Just lovely to add a little Advent cheer to people's busyness and every day stuff. Lovely to feel that they might love their neighbourhood a little bit more because of it.
Then I get home and find N outside on the street with a couple of girls. One of them has just been mugged. Right outside our house, before it's even 10.30pm. He came out because he heard her screaming. The guy hit her in the face repeatedly. Someone called the police for her. N took out a bag of frozen peas for the bruises. I wonder if the contrast of life on the streets is quite so marked anywhere else in the UK? Mmm, I guess Belfast is doing a pretty good job at contending that one.