We rose early for Lian's first democratic experience and stepped inside the school grounds, following a procession of tiny plastic UFOs to the end of the queue. My first thought was "it's so quiet!" - it's hard to stand here without thinking of a hundred schoolchildren shouting, laughing and throwing balls right at you. Or something like that. But it's just after 8 and people merely murmur in numerous languages as I look over the small buildings at a blue sky. When we're done, a quick breakfast at Preston Market this early makes it seem a different kind of place - I don't feel quite so rushed, knowing the rest of the day really is still ahead.