Tiny rainbows dance on the wooden floor and magnolia walls of the bedroom of a modern apartment as early morning sunlight streams through the glass prisms hanging in the large bedroom window. June, a girl in her early twenties lies awake but motionless in bed, buried up to her eyes in great swathes of blue duvet. June's eyes, animated and mischievous, dart restlessly about the room before coming to rest on a point at the foot of the bed. An impish light sparks in her eyes as she smiles beneath the covers.
Slowly, deliberately, she turns back the covers and slides out from beneath them. Crouching down low, she creeps along the side of the bed, trying not to make a sound, and around to the end of the bed. The naked foot of Stephen, her long-term boyfriend, is sticking out from under the big duvet. June kneels down, leaning over to take Stephen's foot in her hand and sweetly kiss and caress it.
Suddenly, at the first touch of June's lips on his toes, Stephen jerks awake, startled, kicking June back onto the floor. Half dazed, Stephen clambers to sit up. He looks around bewilderedly. He sees the other side of the bed is empty. Struggling to focus, he looks down and notices the girl on the floor at the end of the bed, leaning back on her hands, looking equally dazed and stunned.
Stephen stares at June in silence for a moment, before, registering what has happened, he begins to smile. He breaks into a chuckle, and finally explodes in infectious laughter. June stares at him for a moment, still bewildered. She smiles, stifling a snigger, until she too can't control her laughter.
June walks out into the city street, closing the door of an apartment building behind her. The Sun is shining, and she looks in good form. She puts her bag on her shoulder and turns to head off down the street, which is just starting to get busy with early morning traffic. At the far end of the street, a young Chinese girl, Sue, is amongst the crowd of people walking towards June.
From the far end of the street Sue watches June turn from a door on the street and walk towards her amidst the rest of the human traffic on their way to work. Sue glances at June as they pass each other by. June disappears down the street in the opposite direction.
The Thirsty Dog is a small, cozy cafe, with a strong sense of character. Its earthy, unintrusive colour scheme is complimented by paintings by local artists which hang on the walls. Each of the heavy, rustic wooden tables is decorated with a red glass night-light and a single orange marigold in a slender glass vase. Comfortable red and orange couches and large windows make it the perfect place to sit and watch the city outside pass by. Billie Holiday's "Getting Some Fun Out Of Life" plays low on the cafe's sound system.
Sue stands at the counter, her chin resting on her left elbow, her head leaning to one side, absent-mindedly gazing at something.
Clean, wooden pencil shavings falling into a clean ashtray at a table where a young writer sits on a comfy leather couch, in the corner of the cafe, facing the window, his back to Sue. There is a fresh black coffee and a small notebook on the table. Sue watches as he lights a cigarette, opens the notebook and looks out the window at the rain and the coloured umbrellas passing by.
Brian, a balding, middle-aged customer, enters the cafe through the open door. He sees Sue lost in her own little world and silently creeps up behind her, leaning over her shoulder. She jumps as he greets her, snapping her out of her reverie. They exchange perfunctory pleasantries and customer/shop-keeper banter. Sue smiles warmly at Brian, and plays along as he flirts gently with the young, sweet-tempered girl. "Heya Brian. What can I get you?" she asks pleasantly. Brian looks up, shaking the rain off himself. "Ahh, your sweet smile is more than enough, my dear." he replies flirtatiously. "But a bagel and a coffee would be divine?" she finishes his sentence questioningly. "You know me so well." Brian replies, "When are you going to give up that boyfriend of yours... " Brian trails off, and Sue finishes "And run away with me..." Sue smiles at Brian, turns away from the counter, takes out a bagel from a basket and begins preparing his order. He continues to talk to her as she does.
As she finishes Brian's daily invitations to run away with him, Sue begins daydreaming and imagines herself and Brian sitting in a 1950s convertible with the top down, Brian in the driving seat. Both are dressed in American fashions of the 1950's. Sue wears a scarf around her hair and a pair of sunglasses. American deserts and plains flash by outside the car. Brian looks straight ahead at the endless road ahead as he drives. Sue looks at the landscape flashing by. They turn and look at each other seriously, passionately.
Sue finishes wrapping Brian's breakfast order, suppressing a giggle. In the background Brian is still chatting away. His voice rises back into the foreground again. Smiling, he tells Sue how he's been practicing his Chinese for when he meets her parents! "Check it out..." he says, ...(giving his best approximation of a chinese accent) "Xie, xie...ni hao" Sue smiles at Brian, handing his breakfast over the counter and taking the money from him. "Very good" she replies, "Hui jia wan qu ba." Brian winks at Sue, walking out the door. Smiling, Sue watches Brian leave. As she turns around, she notices the Young Writer is still there.
It is now early evening, the sun is setting on the city streets, bathing the pastel-painted buildings in a dusky orange glow. Sue is on her way home from work. As she walks she looks up at the buildings she passes. Through the undressed windows of the apartments, Sue can see that they are all nearly identical to the outside observer; all have magnolia coloured walls. Sue wonders what goes on in those rooms, all painted the same.
Sue's imagination starts to work overtime again; a series of images flash through her head as she continues her walk home.
A young couple lies in bed, the room lit only by the orange glow of streetlights outside beneath the window. Only their heads and hands are visible from beneath the duvet. They gently kiss and touch each other's faces.
A young girl dances around a bedroom, singing loudly and obliviously along to Bjork's Hyperballad.
A group of scruffily-dressed students sit around a living room clouded with smoke, smoking a bong. Loud music plays on the stereo. One of the guys inhales deeply and bursts into an uncontrollable fit of coughing. The rest of the group laugh.
A young man sits on a bed opposite a mirror in a darkened room. He holds a torch under his chin, turning it on and off at intervals and making scary faces into the mirror as he does.
A well-dressed middle-aged woman in a business suit sits curled up on a couch watching political debates on the TV. She picks up a half-empty bottle of vodka from the table in front of her, refills her glass, and gulps a large mouthful down straight.
The limbs, body, and back of a young man can be seen storming around a room. He is shouting loudly, cursing and yelling. An arm throws a plate across the kitchen, narrowly missing the window.
SUE lies curled up in the corner of a bed in a small room lit only by the moonlight coming through the window. The muffled sounds of shouting and delph smashing can be heard in the next room.
Sue wonders if maybe she daydreams too much
It is very early; that unreal, half-lit time of the morning. The oncoming dawn bathes everything in blue. The city street still reverberates with last night's revelry. June walks quickly, purposefully up the street, her arms folded around her. Stephen follows twenty feet behind. He walks slowly, meandering a little. They are not on good terms.
Sue is walking up the familiar street, towards June and Stephen. Sue looks at June as she passes her by. Sue wonders if somedays it just seems like the whole world is in a bad mood?
Sue stands at the window of the Thirsty Dog cafe where she works, again. Now that we see her closer, we notice she has a large bruise over her left eye. She stares out the window vacantly. It is raining again. The rain falls heavy on the ground outside; in puddles, on cars, umbrellas.
Sue stands inside the cafe, looking out. In the background, the young writer sits at a table by himself, facing Sue. "They say you can bring the weather with you when you travel. I hope I don't bring this weather with me when I leave. Some things you just don't seem to be able to leave behind, except maybe in daydreams." Sue thinks to herself. As Sue loses herself in reveries, the Young Writer gets up from the table and leaves the cafe behind Sue, glancing at her as he passes.
Through the window of the cafe the Young Writer is seen pulling up his collar to protect him from the rain as he walks past and crosses to the other side of the street. As he does he looks back at the cafe and smiles at Sue. Sue blushes. She gets up and goes over to clean away the dirty mug at the table where he was sitting. A chain of paper dolls, an aeroplane, and a superman complete with cape, made of torn and folded paper, lie on the table. Sue looks at the dolls. She picks up the Superman, blushes and smiles. "Except in daydreams", Sue says to herself and the empty cafe.
It is evening time on the same familiar, wet city street. The young writer walks down the street. June and Stephen walk up the street, in the opposite direction, towards the writer, they are laughing and affectionate. They pass by the Young Writer.