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the runaway

A window must have cracked open, and the room is now freezing. In the darkness, I nudge it closed and try to find sleep. All at once, I see myself on the floor of a room. It was in January, my last year of college. Everyone was still gone on winter break. I had taken the bus a week early, freeing myself from the small town where my parents lived. They were in the middle of a messy divorce, and I was no help to either of them. The school was half-open, and there were just a few security guards. I would slip inside the film department before five, and hunker down in one of our classrooms. No one could imagine me here, but without windows I had no idea what time it was. I did not wear a watch in those days, foolish as it sounds. My jacket pulled tight, my cheek against the mud-crusted carpet I slept there for seven nights. It was a little like camping I told myself, roughing it by some wild stretch of the imagination.

Here in Moscow, in the middle of the night this somehow comes back to…

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