The gaping mouth of a mine – dark tunnel running back into the earth. Like the innocent railway in Edinburgh, or the mouth of the coal-shaft at Millerton.

You walk in cautiously, clutching at the moss-covered walls for guidance, trying to avoid tripping over the tracks. An indistinct spot of light appears at the other end, wavering like a pale flame. You continue towards it, as it gradually expands, revealing the end of the passage.

There were only a couple of minutes when you were wholly in the dark, and you felt nothing in particular – no sense of transformation, metamorphosis – but somehow, as you approach the other end, you find that everything has changed. All changed, changed utterly. Change for Crewe Junction.

[… Memories of that incident in the tunnels below North Head, standing in the dark of a cave, with a group of girls looking at you, straight in the face. “There’s someone there. I can almost make him out. It’s not completely empty.” They persisted beyond all reasonable expectation.

Finally, realising they weren’t going to go away, you walked out into the midst of them, commenting how interesting it was that one could see nothing when caught in the light of the window.

They stared: dumb, flabbergasted – shocked that anyone could want to stand there silent, hidden from the world …]

On the other side, everything’s reversed. A pretty blonde girl comes up and links her arm in yours. There’s a tribe of kids running around, demanding that you participate in their game. You grab a beer and start to argue about the rugby with a group of loud biker friends.

As evening falls, you ride back to the wilds of Titirangi. The house is full of people – not a book in sight – clamour of voices, curses, tantrums. You’ve got to be up early next day for work, so go to bed with your wife, the blonde girl, Sally. The two of you make love. She turns away and starts to snore.

Antiterra – tunnel into the earth
North Head / [Crewe Junction] / Titirangi

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