Car 6

Mr Yong You'd Dandusitisphant

Outward appearance

Neat, middle aged Asian man. Thin, inward turning mouth. He rocks slightly in place, and then slowly lowers, hangs, his head.

Inside information

Qwner of Cow Tom's Thai restaurant on Westminster Bridge Road. Was given a work permit in 1984 as a specialist chef. Soon discovered that England offered little of the smiles, hand greetings and gentle good grace of his own country.

After 10 years, saved up enough to open his own restaurant in an unpromising locale. It proved to be an immense success. Married Sanam, one of the waitresses, and is now a proud father. He often trots his son Sammy around the restaurant, teaching him to walk.

What he is doing or thinking

Fearing for Sammy. He is huge for his age, but has not begun to talk. His cheeks are covered in a rash. His mother keeps laughing and says the rash will go. It's spreading. The boy's chin has swollen, while his head stays narrow.

Last night Yong Y'oud took Sammy for his usual walk. He kept stumbling and falling, vacantly, without crying. Indulgent customers pretended to be charmed. They asked how old he was, and when Yong Y'oud said 22 months, their smiles grew shadowy, strained.

Sammy is ill. Yong Y'oud thinks of how Sammy used to love hanging upside down from his knees, or hiding under the bamboo chair, grasping at his yellow duck as if at a mystery. He sees his wife Sanam's thin face: its smile too wide, and wonders how he can make her accept the truth.

England suddenly seems smaller.

Previous passenger
Next passenger
Car 6 map
Journey Planner