While in the gym, and for the benefit of the aerobics class right next to the weights, one of the many covers of eighties songs was playing, this one being Bronksi Beat’s Smalltown Boy. I thought of the overt melancholy of the original, the frustration and the sense of asphyxiation it emits. I remembered the dreary landscapes of England, emotional ones and external ones alike.
Then I once more listened closely to the lyrics: I am in Smalltown, as we speak. Which reminded me this: that I am still dreaming of that singular night, when I sneaked to the fourth floor balcony of Birkbeck College in London and saw the city all lit up in the distance and completely serene and then, just two streets away, a lit window — someone living there — and I realised it would not be me.