Malta: I

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I pack, into a suitcase that might be too large for what I’m putting in there.  I prepare myself to encounter that antsy, angsty perpetual motion of air travellers.  For some reason I can’t listen to my headphones on the Gatwick Express.  Perhaps it is because of what happened this Friday, a reaching for an embrace, an embrace denied at the fag end of a long night spent somewhere near the predictably desolate Dalston Kingsland.  I reacted with: a shrug. I’ve heard a lot of people talk about Kingsland Road but my abiding memory is rain, kebab shops and a cash machine that said it would give me £20 but then refused to give me any actual paper money.

Gatwick is dreary.   The light is antiseptic and yet garish, and it has the air of an endeavour that has not managed to reach completion.  There is one runway at this airport, and it shows.  A girl joins the queue with curly blonde hair and I decide to put down my pen for a while.  She returns my look, disinterestedly.

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