A world exists out there, just below the surface, a mirage, a trick of the light, people and places you don't see. This is not just the underclass, which contains a number of life's undesirables, but another world altogether. This is a world populated by the disappeared., the hidden. Every day, people go missing across the country. They come from all walks of life, all ages, backgrounds and professions. Most return, but many do not. Have they all been murdered and their bodies cleverly disposed of? Doubtful. Are they all locked up in mental health institutions. Unlikely. They are here amongst us.
Every night in the area where I work, a white man in late middle age walks the streets looking in bins. He carries a bag to which he adds his finds. His clothes are clean, and he does nothing to suggest he suffers from more severe mental health issues. He moves amongst the drunks and clubbers, between the minicab drivers and fast food salesmen without being seen. Occasionally he sees me watching him, and moves slowly away to disappear into the side streets.
Who is this man? What is his life story? What drives him to walk the city streets in the early hours of the morning, scavenging from bins? He exists in that hidden world, the world you walk through every day. The world you never see.