“I was sitting just by the window in the late summer afternoon… the blinds were partially drawn, enough to let in a bit of light without making me feel any more vulnerable than I already felt. I’d poured myself a little bit of brandy and set it down next to the ungainly stack of social sciences textbooks on my desk.
“As I was about to pick up the first book and begin my study, the smallest ray of light found its way from the world outside, past the small opening under the blinds, into the room and through the brandy glass. In the solemn gray glow, the brandy cast a pale brown shadow across the room, across the map of the east on the northern wall and across my shaking hand.
“I burst out sobbing without knowing precisely why. I grabbed up the glass, drank my brandy, and then picked up the book and began reading, sobbing all the while.”