Day two of WOMAD. James and Victoria are in Kidzone. They’ve been given white plastic bottles and invited to express their dreams and hopes.

Victoria is well away. Her first dream is to have the ceiling of her bedroom hinged so that she can open it up to see the moon, the stars, and passing owls. It would be good to take the roof off altogether. But maybe her parents would be cross if it rained and everything got wet. She also hopes for a bicycle that can fly. Victoria is the perfect participant in the Dreamstore project and is busy cutting out stars and bikes and clouds and sticking them on her bottle.

The activity is not working so well for James, in spite of encouragement from Sylvie, a student volunteer. James wants to have fun, but is finding the white plastic bottle uninspiring. He doesn’t really get the whole idea. It seems to be a supermarket or something and you go through a checkout. Sylvie is feeling discouraged too. She’s not sure herself about the whole buying and selling thing.

On top of that, James has a worry. Botanic Park is right next to the zoo, and some of the WOMAD music is very very loud. What about the animals? What if the pandas can’t sleep?

He asked his Dad about it the night before.

‘You’re right,’ Brett said. ‘It doesn’t need to be this loud. We should write to the organisers.’

Now, James sizes up Sylvie.

‘I have to write a letter,’ he says.

‘Oh that’s a lovely idea,’ says Sylvie. ‘You could put it in your bottle.’

‘Would the organisers get it?’

‘The organisers of Dreamstore?’

That doesn’t sound like what Dad meant. ‘The ones in charge of everything.’

Sylvie sees how it is. Some kids believe in Santa Claus, some in the Tooth Fairy. This one has put all his faith in the organisers of WOMAD. So sweet.

‘Sure,’ she says reassuringly. ‘They’ll get it.’

‘Wouldn’t it be better to email?’

Sylvie has had limited training for her present position, but the job, as she understands it, is to get kids to decorate bottles. Nobody said anything about internet access.

‘This will be best,’ she says firmly. ‘They’ll get it.’

James looks around at bottles covered in stickers and glitter and requests to become fairy princesses. It doesn’t seem very businesslike, but Sylvie has an official badge, so she must know what she’s talking about.

‘Okay,’ James says and in green texta on a sheet of paper he writes his letter.

Dear organisers maybe you didn’t think about it but it must be very hard for the animals to go to sleep when the music is loud. Can you turn it down? Yours sincerely James.

He folds the paper, puts it in his bottle. On the bottle he writes I hope the pandas can sleep. He hands it to a beaming Sylvie.

They both feel the achievement of a difficult job well done.