The politician stared glumly into the night sky. It had been another day of crises and scandals, and he needed a moment to himself. At precisely six minutes past ten, the International Space Station came winking into view, a luminous orange-yellow dot that moved steadily across the heavens at 17,000 miles per hour. He watched it with a hint of envy. Imagine being a Doug or Bob, stepping off a pandemic-riddled earth into the cool, quiet void of space. Circling the planet every ninety minutes, safe in the knowledge that it was all happening down there. So unlike his earth-bound reality — a spectacular rise through purged ministerial ranks (good), which had now shackled him to a lunatic government and the biggest public health cock-up in living memory (very, very bad). He watched the space station disappear from view and trudged upstairs to bed.