A typical Friday night.
They were here again tonight.
Dark menacing figures of men in hoods with blue rangers scarves covering their faces, more as a badge of identity than a mask, reminding me of Satanists in a Hammer horror, standing at the gate in a group laughing and drinking and yawping loudly up at us in slurred Ayrshire accents.
We saw one of them finish drinking from a bottle and lob it casually onto our driveway so that it smashed.
"Did they break a window?", asked my mother as we all hovered about near the window on the landing that looks down onto the back.
"No it was a bottle. A bottle smashed", said my sister.
We went through the usual ritual of phoning the police; the woman taking our call, sounding snippy and annoyed, said they'd send someone out as soon as they could.
That meant perhaps an hour or more too late.
In the mean time the windows at the back of our house became a coconut shy at a fair; our pain and our humiliation the prize.
We saw one of them lean back like a man pitching a baseball and then everyone jumped as what looked like a grey chunk of masonry seemed to explode through the window followed by orgiastic whoops and cheers from the men at the gate.
Then, slow as in a game of cricket, another of the hooded men lobbed his rock.
We don't always stand and look out of the window while this happens, sometimes we sit down and just give into it, wait for it to be over because you get used to feeling helpless and sometimes it just makes you feel tired; you sit, you lie, you cover your ears hoping that it will stop soon.
Then there was just more of the same. More sudden bursts of shattering that made you jump; more excited, sadistic laughter from the men at the gate that chills your spine; more yells too garbled by drink and hate to understand.
Then they finally moved on but it didn't feel like relief anymore after they left because we all knew the same thing was going to happen again tommorrow or the day after or something worse.
Getting shovels and brushes from down stairs; my mother and father and older brother started sweeping up the piles of sharp broken glass from the window sill and the landing and stairs, my father warning me and my sister to stay away because of the broken glass.
My mother was angry. My father was, as usual, silently stoical.
Then the phone started to ring.
I listened on the extension.
"Hello", I heard my father say.
"Are you paki bastird?", I heard a male voice say with a fake, mocking Indian accent; the sound of others laughing in the background.
"Who is this?", asked my father.
"Are you paki bastird?", said the voice again.
"Go to hell", said my father slamming the phone down.
Then I put the phone down as well but it started ringing again straight away.
I heard my father downstairs pick up again and say "Go to hell" again slamming the phone down.
The phone started ringing again and I think he pulled the phone cord out of the wall because it didn't ring after that.
After an hour a police man and woman turned up.
The police are all local boys and girls and always give me the impression that they're all part of the same wickerman cult of Scottish White Supremacy as the people who attack us; probably went to school with them anyway.
They smirked as we, wearilly, told them everything that had just happened; adding that it was just a typical friday night, that it had happened every Friday or Saturday; for years ever since we'd first moved here from Carslisle.
They told us the usual thing; that it was probably just kids; that there was nothing they could do about it unless we could identify one of the people who had done it; that they would drive around the area and see if they could spot anyone.
They didn't seem very interested; just asked us if we wanted victim support but what use are they? They don't stop the people from hurting us.
And that is all we want; for them to stop.
Otherwise it had been a good birthday, I had got a Yamaha electric organ and I am now 7.