Skipping a bit– weeks later I wandered out of the desert, somewhere near California, where the desert was in bloom; it was properly Surreal, picking round the cactus flowers like Alice in the garden of talking roses and bread-and-butterflies. Somehow I ended up in a city and offloaded the meth as soon as I could; with the money I earned I went on a spree and got through sixteen tonnes of Jack Daniels and 600 bucks converted into dimes, which I loaded into a Tom and Jerry pinball machine one after the other, til I couldn’t sleep at night, the bells went on ringing in my head so long. The civic monuments in this city were restricted to a wax museum showing Religious scenes and a grocery store that the Barrow gang had held up in 1933 (they were still talking about the way Blanche Barrow wore trousers). For a while there I was at a loss as to why these things were termed ‘amusements’ in the tourist guide. Next town over there was a carnival and a shooting gallery; still everywhere I went there was always the same three people, a waitress named Barb, a guy in a trucker cap and a huge, towering man in a black suit and his retarded boy; inevitably the man looked at me and said to his son, “Cover your ears when sinners are talking son,” and so he did.
Finally I got on out to Providence, which is near enough to Shitsville. After 24 hours of relentless rain and drinking, sunlight broke in on one of those hangovers that can teach godless people how to pray. The hard bastard Texas light was coming in through the venetians in strips so sharp it cut my eyes like a razor. It was absolutely airless in that room, but the weight at the end of the curtain cord was moving in perpetual motion, going clink clink clink clink clink clink clink infinitely against the blinds. Then from the next room came the alien sound of some sadist tuning a radio; suddenly the voice cracked out, clear and strong: SALVATION WILL COME TO THOSE WHO SEEK REFUGE IN THE LORD.
“Fuck me dead,” said I. Then stumbling, blind, into a white and wistful morn, I could feel how close I was to Shitsville.