Brighton city centre, one block from the sea front: I am walking along the street on my way to deliver some film to a developing lab when I notice that two police have been called to deal with an abandoned suitcase. It has been left flat on its side in the middle of the pavement outside a hotel and a travel information office. The first one approaches it, talking into her radio. This is the town where they almost blew up Thatch. It’s the week of the cartoon controversy. There’ll be an armoured robot and a cordon of stripey white vans here before you can say “controlled explosion”, I think.

I am, as often, completely wrong. Instead of calling for the cavalry she kicks the suitcase repeatedly. Not having lost one of her lower limbs in a supersonic shower of six-inch nails or detonated a dirty nuclear device designed to rid infidel England of a large chunk of its gay population, she picks it up and the two WPCs head off on their way.