Tonight I feel a little like I did more than 15 years ago when I found myself curled up in the boot of my grandparents’ car, staring up at the stars as my grandad drove around, looking for his missing grandson.

I had hidden there an hour after ‘running’ away from home. My parents had informed me that we were emigrating to New Zealand and I hadn’t taken the news well.

I remember that night as if it were yesterday.

I lay there for several hours, occasionally hearing my grandad’s voice as he stopped to talk with other relatives. A search party had been assembled.

I don’t know what I thought would happen. Deep down I must have known I would be found and perhaps I was just seeking attention.

The stars, and the regularity of the streetlights flitting past above had a hypnotic effect. I fell asleep for a while; a restless half-sleep of planes, suitcases and girls I’d only just started to see in a certain way.

Tonight, a similar rhythm seems to have taken hold. A pulse, a faint beacon – something in the distance I can’t discern.


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