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You love the sunsets, the splash of colour across the sky which seems to last forever. You are no longer moving but fixed in a wash of crimson and violet and tangerine. You feel obliged to provide a rational explanation for the special effects – volcanic dust in the upper atmosphere, desert sandstorms... Somehow this makes it easier to watch. You stop by the roadside to admire the display, leaning back on the warm bonnet to look for the first star. Cars slow down as they drive by, beeping their horns to see if you need help. Casually, you wave them away.


At dusk, the earth drops away leaving only a pale light in the sky and a lumpy blackness. Flickering shapes materialise out of the gloom like grey ghosts and disappear almost before you’ve seen them. Maybe you catch the pinpricks of light reflected in their eyes before they disappear beneath you with a dull thud. You think about stopping but already it’s too late and you have to keep on going only slower now.

During the day, the road melts to liquid and the horizon hovers tantalisingly. At night, everything is concentrated into a single point of light, seemingly immovable, which finally separates into two small moons hanging forever in the blackness, always on the point of arrival but never approaching until the sudden blustering, billowing roar of a road-train, all lit up like a fairground, which slams by leaving only darkness again and the pungent smell of dust.

There is always one more town to reach just beyond the edge of daylight. And when you finally get there, the streets are brightly-lit but empty. Everybody is waiting for you in the pub where somebody is plays True Blue and the punters love to sing-along with a low rumble and wistful beery eyes. The pub is varnished hard and brown like a cockroach shell. The backstairs crack beneath your feet, releasing a smudge of dust and a whiff of damp. You could be lost here, down these wide, dull corridors that echo with the sound of muffled coughs and distant running water. There are humans here but you are afraid to meet them.

The window in your room has already been broken to let in the chilled night air. You will have to wait until morning to see the view over the pub car park. You do not inspect the mattress too closely but spend some time reading the fire notice and counting the refreshment sachets.

You will not sleep if those dogs bark all night.