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city with a view


In summer he rambles at midnight. He cracks a branch from the mango tree growing tall by the verandah, eases his way down the steps in the dark and chooses a different direction from the night before. Usually it is because he cannot sleep in the heat, and although the air outside is just as hot and heavy, he wades through it deliberately, savouring it as though it is melted chocolate, wrapping it around him like a cloak. He sweats and is alive. He is invincible.
But in winter, it is the early morning light he pursues. It is the air, the sky, so crisp it is white, like the frost on the ground. The morning chill is sharp, hanging before him like a pane of glass, and he moves briskly, smashes through it, lets it tear him up. It is the sting to the eyes, the brittle tip of the nose. He pushes his sleeves to his elbows, drives harder, and when he makes it to the top of the point, with the gleaming cliffs below him, he exhales loudly and stops. It is the river, so still, and the boats awaiting the day.

Find out more about this Hello Sunday stroll.

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