This entry is the first in a new fall series.
Wake up! Wake up! I was walking; well at least I was trying to walk. The ground beneath me was so unsteady, so many pebbles of all different sizes and shapes that I could not stand erect like a normal person with shoes on a sidewalk. My knees kept buckling from the pain in my feet till I decided to try crawling on all fours. The way was so desolate, long and wide; I was on an expansive pebble beach. I looked around for signs of life, buildings-a church, other people and saw none. Nothing but air, sky, and pebbles, air, sky, and pebbles. I knew that if I kept trying to move I would eventually reach something, Christmas. There would be Christmas and then I would surely find signs of life.
Suddenly I heard an echo of a sound that came from far away calling me to wake up. Oh Life! How I had longed to be relieved of this empty wasteland so hard to traverse. The sound was so sweet and welcome that I wouldn’t even heed what it said to awaken. Instead I stopped and sat on the warm pebbles to hear the song, “Wake-up, wake up!”
Gradually I driftedfrom hearing to listening and as I did the vision of a man with a long white beard in a clean blue oxford shirt appeared in the distance. He was surrounded by small fairies and I turned my head to see that I too had three fairies hovering over and around my head. I was still on the wide pebble beach. The man started to walk towards me. No, I can’t say he was walking. The man glided towards me and then stopped and waited for me to go to him.
“Get up!” a fairy whispered to me. “You can’t just crawl to him on all fours like an animal. Stand up straight and walk!”
“Do you know what you’re asking?” I replied. Then, in obedience to the tone of reason from the fairy command I raised my two hands to try to gain my balance. The earth was as unaccommodating as ever. I eventually straightened myself, but I was horrified at the idea of walking such a distance on those pebbles. I had no choice. My longing for another soul compelled me to obey.
The sun brightened the space between and around us as wispy clouds navigated away from mister sun. Step by painful step were taken with as much human nobility as I could muster. The man did nothing to make it easier for me except not to move farther away as I approached him. He patiently awaited my arrival watching me with what I had hoped was pity and not disgust.
After what seemed an eternity of torture, our eyes met. I stopped, wanting the distance to be good enough as I called out, “Greetings, my friend.”
My other fairy buzzed around and pinched me on the behind while her partner said, “Don’t stop, and for heaven’s sake don’t fall on all fours again. You’re almost there. Get closer!”
The break, not sweet enough to languish in, ended as I took several more steps towards the man hoping that our meeting would be worth all of this suffering.
“Greetings.” He said. His voice sounded like a combination of honey and sand.”My name is Noah. Will you sit with me?