I'm sat smoking a marlboro menthol on the fire escape at the back of the apartment . I'm sat on West 47th Street between 8th and 9th Avenue. I'm sat in New York.
It's July 5th 2010.
It's 10.38pm but my body thinks it's 3.38am and i've not slept in maybe 40 hours. I'm 2 blocks from Times Square but it's quiet. It's quiet. The noise is contained. I hear the drone of air conditioning units, and the irregular car horn.
I finish my cigarette and light another.
It's warm and humid. My clothes feel uncomfortable so I unbutton my shirt and feel the warm air on my skin making no difference to my comfort level.
I've only been in this city for around 9 hours but it already feels like I'm here to live. I left Leeds, and my family house can't be my home. But with no other fixed address, this move into this apartment for 1 week feels like my home. And it is.
At 4pm earlier that day I was sat in Times Square watching. Watching people, watching screens, watching clouds, watching cars, watching. And I was comfortable then. I was at home then.
3 weeks ago