I read ‘The Road Less Travelled’ by M. Scott Peck. I was coming to the end of this particular road. I was experiencing ‘dark nights of the soul’ every other night and if the witches didn’t keep me awake, the bad egg smell from the corrosion in the water and heating system did.
I sat opposite Nowhere Man on the tube, having just visited Sam at Bart’s hospital. Sam had AID’s and was dying. I felt alone with my impending grief as Sam’s other friends were men from the gay community I’d decided I was excluded from.
I had already used the top of my cigarette packet for a roach, the packet was nearly empty so I put the remaining fags behind my ears and made the rest of the packet into an origami robot, with a massive dick that stuck out like ‘Jake the Peg’. Nowhere Man laughed, he looked a bit younger than me, dark skin, lean and fit. I wrote my number with eyeliner down the side of the dick of my robot man, gave it to Nowhere Man, and got off at my stop.
Nowhere Man called from a call box the next evening. He understood numbers and places and we agreed to meet at Eros, Piccadilly Circus at 8pm the following Friday.
I stood by the God of sensual love and desire, not aware of the meaning of Eros, Psyche or anything else that I was continually acting out. I did however feel like a circus, a clown one minute being bullied at work and a dancing horse the next, climbing over and around sexually transmitted diseases and the human condition of death and dying.
Nowhere Man was only a few minutes late. We got onto a bus, me distracting the driver trying to find my travel card while he got on behind me and found us seats upstairs so we could smoke. We ended up in a flat high up a tower block in a pretty North London area I hadn’t been to before, near Swiss Cottage. In the flat there were Nowhere Men everywhere, sleeping bags in corridors and on the kitchen floor. My Nowhere Man got a condom from a man standing up smoking a roll-up. We fiercely snogged our way into the bathroom and fucked, briefly.
I was shocked, but this time not by my own behaviour, I was shocked at this group of men who had nothing. There were hundreds of Bosnian refugees in and around London, victims of torture from Serb-run detention camps. These men had an air of trauma I recognized from Samaritan callers who had been abused.
I didn’t stay at the flat, I found my way back to my own flat via 3 different night buses – deep in thought. I wanted to understand the world more. I wanted to go deeper into the human psyche than my work as a Samaritan volunteer and I knew to do this I had to look deeper within myself.