Car 6

Miss Harriet Zinovsky

Outward appearance

Slightly plump businesswoman in brown trouser suit and long overcoat. Keeps rubbing her thumb and fingers together.

Inside information

Miss Zinovsky has a Russian father and an Israeli mother. She speaks three languages and has a first in Organic Chemistry from Cambridge. She is 23, but older people, particularly academics, feel comfortable around her. Recently began her first job at the Science Museum in Kensington.

Harriet organises interactive exhibits. By interactive she means people get to touch real things. She calls it RR -- Real Reality. Her current project is Fakes: children get to touch real fur and fake fur, costume and real jewellery. She is on her way to a leather warehouse in the Elephant and Castle.

What she is doing or thinking

Remembering her first visit. The warehouse smelled like a cross between an abattoir and a jar of vanilla sugar. Pale bales of leather, all undyed, were in shaggy rolls like giant pastry. You could tell what country the skins came from by the scars. From Western countries, there were close stitch marks around cuts. From others, there are fat ribbons of scar tissue.

Is she going mad? She remembers that one of the skins had a tatoo. It's possible that people tatoo the skins of sheep somewhere in the world. But a rose and a banner with the name Maria?

Harriet has a nightmare vision of a third world so poor that it has started to sell human skin for leather. She shakes herself. It must be false memory syndrome.

It isn't. She goes on to the Elephant.

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