Dozing between day and dream to a soundtrack of colliding stars, I sniff the dust of old rooms and hear the muffled echoes of words not spoken for the longest of times. Coupled with the headache I haven’t been able to shake for the best part of a week, the strangeness only intensifies. Closing my eyes, I walk the hallway of the old house in Luton, then trace my steps from the front door to the bus station at four in the morning. I remember the looks on the faces of the dogs as I fed them their treats before fleeing into the dark on my way to work. Their beady eyes and sad faces stayed with me all morning, haunting me for deserting them. Only, when I’d return, they would celebrate my reappearance by dancing on their hind legs and all was forgiven. Rubbing my temples, I’m in my grandparents’ old house. A weekday morning before school sat in the armchair by the window checking I’ve got all my homework. The smell of toast fills the air. Toast and tea. The radio in the kitchen plays music as golden as the soggy toast sliding down my throat. These places have shed themselves from my life like layers of skin. Their presence remains, though, as part of me as the bones I keep within.