This is the kind of thing I hate to write

This is the kind of thing I hate to write

I charm people for a living.

I charmed my teachers when I, an aspiring writer, took up science and maths instead of literature.

I charmed my students when I showed them the wonders of my subject matter when I wasn’t at all convinced with it — I would rather read novels than slog through a book filled with formulas and esoteric terminology.

I charmed the folks I met on the Internet by not disclosing my physical whereabouts except in cases where time zone differences would affect my health, and I almost always only tell people where I live through private channels.

The problem is, the situation is so terrible where I live now that I can’t disguise it with clever wordplay anymore.

And in case you think I could have escaped, you’re right — except that, despite having the right credentials, I can’t even go to the airport now.

I’m a foreigner living on what I’ve believed all my life to be a stepping stone to elsewhere greater, but I’m stuck and the crocs are gathering…

Thank God for technology. I only hope where I live does not become the next Iran.

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