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Fin reflected on what a sad existence it was for these kids. Little or nothing to do, strangled by a society still in the grips of a joyless religion. An economy on the slide, unemployment high. Alcoholism rife, a suicide rate well above the national average. The motivation to leave was as compelling now as it had been eighteen years ago. === I ordered plaice in the hotel last night. Aye, and it was fresh all right. Fresh out the fucking freezer and into the deep-fat fryer. === It seemed that no matter what you ate, it nearly always came back up looking like diced carrots in porridge. === The jugular veins that carry blood away from the head only require about four and a half pounds of pressure to cut them off. Whereas the carotid arteries carrying blood to the head require about eleven pounds to put them out of action. You’d have to apply about sixty-six pounds of pressure to cut off the vertebral arteries, and thirty-three pounds to choke off the trachea.