Night In The City

In the hear of Phoenix lies a suberranean sone where day fades into night nearly without notice, where the city doesn't shut down with the sunset, and where, for some, the day begins with the night. Welcome to the night watch.

In this area, people are up all hours: the bored, the unemployed, the tragic; on bikes, on foot, on parole. Girls, boys and men and women with sallow skin, sunken eyes and racing hearts. Debbie says, "There's a hell of a lot of meth here. And now crack is getting big."

"The thing about Sunnyslope, says Uncle Billy, "the only thing different between Sunnyslope at night and in the daytime is they'll kill you a lot faster, and you can't see it coming. People die up here, dude. I've known seven of 'em that died in the last year."

He goes on, his stare direct and unsparing like Charles Manson. "Once you're part of it [Sunnyslope], it won't let you go. You can't get on your feet enough to get ahead to get out of here. I don't care how they look at it, it's a semi-ghetto. There is hard-core reality here on the streets of Sunnyslope. I've been here on the Slope and off for thirty years. I'll probably die here.

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