On the riverside the cameras eye hovered around the talking bench, panned across the river and back again to the talking bench.
“I lived in the room above where my father is now. I came down and people should listen to me.”
I leaned on the railing and watched the ships go by, the pleasure boats, and the outgoing tide.
The camera eye went to the floating dock, it was empty, it filmed the pleasure boat docked there, the ebb and flow of the waves.
“I have a message for mankind, that they should all listen to me”.
And there in the small room was the red water.
I was entranced by the floating dock, the unusual perspective of corridors, of gangplanks that formed architectural webs of metal post and roof all around me. The little office, the feeling of the floating dock bobbing up and down on the waves.
The camera moved on back up he gangplank to the riverside walk and along to the stairs and down to the beach cove. The camera eye filmed the jetsam and flotsam washed up on shore, panning along the distant warehouses opposite, filming the river meandering around the horseshoe bends.
I went to look at the wall covered in seaweed and moss, its green slippery texture, the waterlogged wood, the great blocks of broken concrete on the shore, left from another era, the dancing midges.
“No one knows me, I have lived before, I came from the world above, the room above”.
The grey blue river had silver speckles over it from the afternoon sun, I watched it flow upstream, people walked or jogged along.
The camera now stopped at an inlet enclosed by old warehouses. The camera filmed a white duck that preened its feathers and then snuggled down into the sand, the litter, garbage, dumped stuff.
I watched the small streamlet that ran down the wet beach from higher small pools; water that seemed to flow from inexhaustible supply right at the top of the inlet. I looked at the ladders built into the walls that would transfer men from boats into warehouse doors. I put my face against the railing and I felt trapped on the outside.
The camera now began following the main road.
There is a garden in the sky where a girl with red boots is playing. Her father has gone back down to earth and left her on her own. An ogre sometimes comes and stares over the wall at her. Before he left, her father planted a small posy of flowers in the ground for her.
The camera resumes the Thames walk, stops to film the riverbank. A woman is out walking her two small dogs, one is a small fragile whippet, thin as a skeleton, the other ambles over decking over the river that is out of bounds to people due to its instability.
The girl with red boots is playing in the garden in the sky. She will come back to earth with a message for mankind and no one will listen.
The river has filled a small boat dock with water and receded, in the water I watch a swarm of fish dart and glide in circles through the shadows, beneath the swarms larger fish cruise lazily.
In the riverside park the camera films the flowers. Two teenagers immediately stop and ask the camera to film them. They strike a pose by the tennis court and talk about their leisure activities.
I watch the tennis players as they bat the tennis ball back and forth. In my hand is a bright yellow flower that I picked from a tree which I leave behind on the ground behind a little wall.
The girl in the red boots must come down to the earth now. She’s been left alone for ages without her mother or father in the garden in the sky and they never went back for her, not even the ogre who looked over the wall was interested in her.
The camera is filming an old brick bus shelter decorated by children’s painting of a river scene with boats and birds.
I head down Three Crane’s Walk back to the riverside again, the camera stops to film the dark alleyway between the tall buildings.
The camera starts filming the bank and the outgoing tide. A tall red sailed fishing boat motors by going down stream.
In Wapping High Street the girl with red boots and a camera is filming the outside of Turners Star, she goes inside, beads of sweat cover her brow, she films the pictures on the wall and banters with the men propped up against the bar.
The camera seems momentarily disorientated, it walks to the north filming, to the East filming, to the West filming anything in sight. I try to steer it back on course and head it back to the river walk.
“I am from the world above, I have come with a message, everyone must know and listen, I am from the room above, I can foresee events that will happen, people must listen”.
Then follows a pier that goes out into the river, that goes down to the pleasure boats moored in a floating dock at the end of the pier. In the distance two men are skimming stones across the waves. A cook runs from boat to boat; from the Captain Kidd pub people in the beer garden stare down at the river.
My time is running out, my time has run out, I’ve missed my appointment, I get irritated by the camera that goes by without seeing me.
I settle down on a bench in front of an old barge that has attracted the bird life, a Coot is building a nest; a young grey gull waddles down the beach pecking at things between the stones. The river police-boats are moored outside.
The camera waits to finish filming now, the second battery is running low. It comes to a clock tower and films it for a few seconds. A tower above the rooftops somewhere in Wapping.