the peacock feather was at the peak of its revival as an accessory for the boudoir and suburban lounge. An Indian man sold them from a sack cloth bag along Oxford Street and in Notting Hill and Camden. Perhaps it was the same man, maybe there were several. At that time a French onion seller used to call from house to house in Hampstead and Belsize Park on a bicycle. Strings of garlic were also available. The onyx telephone did not ring or the man who was supposed to call did not call, or at least he did not call when she was in, at home, within earshot, more than she wanted to be, but this is how things were, and there was no such thing as call waiting either.