Detroit: Motor City – built by cars and built for cars. Home of Ford, GM, Chrysler, Motown records and the Nation of Islam. There was no one else on the Rustbelt stretch of road, only him and me.

This morning, a stiff breeze was blowing from the Persian Gulf. It often does, with a welcome cooling effect. Outside the restaurant windows, though, half a dozen human figures swung perilously in the gale as they inched down the building. External window-cleaning at 150 metres can never count as a relaxing job.

Sex and violence go hand in hand for Nazuk. ‘Is there any other way to have intercourse?’, she questions, punctuating with a deep, manly laughter as her Adam’s apple bobs up and down, almost as if enjoying the flummery of the question.

Sydney is a city made for postcards. Its gorgeous harbour is adorned by a giant steel arch bridge and an eggshell opera house. Within the city’s greater metropolitan area are some of the world’s finest beaches, at least three national parks and a host of rivers. And over a hundred mosques.

A #RealTrouper is anyone whose life is a revealing story of a thirst for success, a responsibility to provide for a family, an ambition to make a change from what seems destined because of the ‘accident of birth’.

It is a city of mystery and mythology. The mystery of Timbuktu is essentially the mystery of a highly developed city which flourished south of the Sahara in the desert. Not the sort of place in the middle of the ‘Dark Continent’ associated in history with extensive urban centres.