Conversations in the Dining Room
Emma Knytleigh: In an attempt to record the current history of Stoney Grove a number of interviews and conversations will be recorded with some of the people who have connections with the estate. Accordingly the Dining Room has been supplied with hidden microphones and recording equipment to allow the process to take place in as natural a setting as possible. Participants are, of course, aware that conversations are being recorded.
James: Do you think we should tell them about last night? Do you think theyll think were crazy people?
Amy: Ann already thinks Im crazy. She always has. Dont sweat it.
James: Okay, but she doesnt think Im crazy.
Amy: Sure she does. As soon as I told her I was pregnant, the first thing she had to be thinking was, "James is out of his mind to have a baby with you!" She didnt say it thoughAnn never does.
Ann: Good morning. Howd you guys sleep?
Amy: Morning. Not a bad night. Its kind of creaky and drafty, but I'm getting used to it. I guess I expected everything to be fancier you know, more like youre rich.
James: I slept fine, thank you.
Simon: So you think were slumming it, then? Not posh enough for you?
Amy: Hey Simon. No, not really. Kind of like staying in a hotel thats seen its best. I guess you can fix it up. Youre making progress downstairsbut upstairs its all kinda shabby.
Simon: And I suppose you live in
Amy: I live in a concrete box. But Im not the one who won the lottery and has been drinking cream teas for the past six months. Im allowed to live in a dump. Im a grad student.
Simon: Well if you don't like it, you can...
Ann: Toast or cereal this morning? Shirleys got a kettle on for tea, but if anyone wants coffee, Ill go ask her to make a pot.
Amy: I cant face another cup of tea. Coffees good.
James: Id love a cup of tea, thank you.
Simon: Tea here as well. Thanks Ann. So James, are you going running again this morning? Im afraid I wont be able to join you. Got lots to do today
James: Yeah, I thought Id go. The path around the lake is good. I think Ill try to get further today.
Ann: Amy, what do you want to do this morning?
Amy: Maybe we could go check out some stores around here? Nothing fits right anymore. Besides, Im freezing all the time. Does it ever get warm here? Cant you afford any heat?
Simon (muttering): I thought fat was supposed to keep you warm.
Ann (whispering): Simon!
Amy: Yeah, fat is supposed to keep you warm. Pregnancy isnt though. And if you think Im fat now, wait a few more months.
Simon: Are we to have the great pleasure of seeing you then as well?
Ann: Simon, be quiet.
James: So whos been growing the weed?
Ann: We dont mean to. I dont have time keep up with it all. We need to get someone in again to keep things straight until winter.
James: No, no, I wasnt criticizing your garden. I meantthe pot, the cannabis. Its looking good, really healthy.
Simon: Pot? You saw some here?
James: Yeah. Saw a big patch of it down by the lake.
Ann: Where exactly?
James: Theres an old house back there on the hillside. Someone was sitting in the doorway having a smoke. Place smelled like a disco. I didnt want to breathe!
Simon: You didnt stop in for a puff?
James: No man, I dont smoke. Anything. It slows you down.
Amy: James is a real health freak. Got the pecks to show for it, dont you, sweetie?
Ann: Do you think that was Frank? I dont believe it. Emma would kill him!
Simon: Ill kill him myself if he gets busted. Thats all we need"Stoney Grove Owners Pushing Drugs" will be all over the bleeding paper.
Shirley: Drugs? Are you getting into the drug trade now Mr. Tinsley? Keeping up your biker image, are you? Heres the tea. Itll be a few more minutes for the coffee. Its going to be coffee every morning, is it?
Amy: For me anyway. I hate tea. All those little things floating around in dishwater. Yuck.
Ann: Thanks Shirley. Wed appreciate it if you could make us a pot of coffee tomorrow morning too.
Simon: And bring us a hash pipe, could you be a dear?
Shirley: Sorry, Mr. Churchills got the only hash pipe I know about
Simon: Really? So he does smoke?
Shirley: Like a chimney. Always has his own little garden round the back of the cottage he lives in. Martin wont touch the stuffdoesnt get big enough and you cant really show it now, can youbut Frank keeps a patch.
Ann: Does Emma know?
Shirley: Thats why shes so mad! Dont you pay any attention? Go ask her yourself.
Ann: I thought she was mad because Frank wouldnt tell her about Johns father.
Shirley: Well now thats nobodys business. Nobodys business at all. Nothing to do with her, or with you. Bunch of outsiders who dont know enough to keep your noses (sound of door closing on Shirleys muttering)
Ann: Shes so touchy sometimes. Oh, God, I told the florist she could take whatever she wanted from the grounds for the arrangements! We could have a house full of the stuff !
Amy: Ann, I dont want to be too obvious here, but if youre tenant has been growing pot on your property for years, I think you should be worried about more than the floral arrangements.
Ann: Youre right. Weve got to get him to get rid of it. Weve invited half the police force to the party for goodness sake. Simon, run down with James and tell him to clear it out.
James: Thanks for breakfast, Ann. Ill see you later. Good luck shoppingget something as beautiful as you.
Amy: Are you nuts? Nothing is going to be beautiful. This is England. Have you seen how people dress?
Ann: Well, you dont have to start off negatively or we might as well not go.
Amy: Sorry, sorry.
Ann: Whats your problem this morning? Youve been all over Simon. You even managed to get him to stick up for the house!
Amy: Hey, Im sorry. I guess I shouldnt take it out on him, I mean, whos to say that its all his fault, but, you know, youre not happy.
Ann: No, Im not happy, but I think Im okay. This place is still really hard sometimes. I dont feel like I've made any friends everyone wants something. I have staff that are mad at me because Im rich, or Im not one of the Halls, I have acquaintances at the church who are very nice, but just want a juicy donation, the local newspaper hates me you know Simons really the only one on my side.
Amy: So, it isnt working out. Why not do something else?
Ann: I want to be connected with something. I want to do something with my life thats constructive.
Amy: Like worrying about floral arrangements for a party full of people who you just said hate you?
Ann: Well if I dont, well get arrested! No, seriously, I think I can do something great with this house.
Amy: Have you finished your paper for the SOMEH conference?
Ann: No. Done the research, havent written a word yet.
Amy: Thats bad. Not for me, hell I never write a word until the day before the conference. But you, blowing off an international meeting? Thats not good, honey.
Ann: Yeah, Ill get it done. Dont be mad at Simon though. Its not his fault. Really. Things are getting better.
Amy: Okay, Ill back off. Lets go out. Can we take his bike?