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“Except this time it’s actually food you might want to eat!” he said.

“It always takes me right back to solitary. When they’d open the little hatch in the door and slide the food in. I always enjoy staying in motor inns. Very nostalgic for me,”

“Even the decor reminds me of the Wacol rec room we had access to if we weren’t too naughty. Glad to be out, but. Good to have work, you know?”

Mark Douglas, of Blackall, has been out of prison for almost a decade and a half but some things, such as having a motor inn breakfast slid under a door at 5am, take him right back there.

Last night, he pulled into the Captain Starlight Motor Inn on the Betoota City Limit to rest his weary head after a marathon drive up from Adelaide.

But he wasn’t going to drift off the sleep without filling in his breakfast menu card which dangled from the front doorknob.

Smiling to himself, after two hard days’ drive, he ticked every single box on that card. From avocado to zucchini fritters – it was clean that Mark was going to feast when he woke.

“They had to slide two plates under the door, I ordered that much,” he said.

“And you’d be goddamn right if you said I ate it all. I feel fantastic. I’ve only got to drive up to Blackall today so it’s nice and easy. But yeah, still can’t get over the fact that places still slide your breakfast under the door like you’re in prison,”

“The novelty of it never wears off.”

More to come.


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