Car 6

Ms Sabrina Foster

Outward appearance

Brown suit, tan ribbed jumper, long brown coat. Piled up, M-People hair. Hands held criss-cross over the top of a letter.

Inside information

Teller at Kennington Building Society. Advertiser in the same Time Out personal ads being scanned at that moment by Passenger 71. Reading her first batch of replies.

What she is doing or thinking

It was a mistake to advertise as a black woman. It would have been a mistake not to. Right now a crab-faced white man with a grizzled beard is leering up at her from a photo-booth nightmare. His letter keeps talking about his car and house. Glancing sideways first, Sabrina looks at the next letter.

And quickly, she covers it. Attached is a tiny photo from a contact sheet of a man in the nude. Not to be unkind, but she would need a magnifying glass anyway. He looks doe-eyed and sweet, dumb enough to think that a full-frontal would turn a woman on.

What she wants is a mature, intelligent black man who is in stable employment that does not cost him his dignity. There must be one somewhere?

Her next correspondent is white, pockmarked, with a pony tail. His letter is amazing. He plainly thinks women advertise for one night stands. The next reply is an outright proposal of marriage from Zimbabwe.

Sabrina pushes the whole mess into her bag, and goes. On the platform she thinks: I'd settle for someone nice, fat. Like the big, suited pillow who just pushed past her.

Well, maybe next week...

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