– The letter that started it all -
The letter was written on a piece of pale salmon pink paper with a feint white flower printed in the corner. It, the flower, was meant to looked like it was watermarked, but it just looked like a cheap piece of paper that comes with a matching envelope. One of those letter writting sets you are given as a kid by that Aunt that you don't really know, who has no idea what else to give you.
This letter didn't have a matching envelope. It didn't have it's origins in a a disinterested Aunt. The letter hadn't been recieved; it was yet to be sent.
The letter was opened and smoothed flat on a denim clad leg.
The denim was old and worn. When the denim first clad these legs it was already the denim of the spinster Aunt, purchased at the local thrift shop or maybe even stolen from a neighboughs clothesline, perhaps it was not the denim of a socially defiant Aunty but of a work-horse Grandmother. A grandmother on her knee , in the bush, building a life without even a mobile phone for comfort.
But the demin was old, worn, frayed, it had seen better days, or maybe it had just seen days; many of them.
The knees of the jeans torn. the hairs on the knee inside protruded through the time worn perforations.The knee inside the jean leg was young and reckless.
The leg was resting up against the once red, now orange Australia post box.
The owner of the leg(or rather, the person the leg was attached to; because I don't think anyone would ever say "I own my leg") and reader of the letter creased her forehead in concentration, bit her lip, pursed her mouth and did a number of other body postures that showed her nervousness.
Woe is me! I have really done it this time. I’m in a spot of trouble. No… not a spot; a big-sticky-hard-to-remove-stain.
My heart has been broken, stompt upon, spat on. My soul is wavering all over the place and I’ve had enough!
I don’t want to burden you with all the details but I want you to know I’ll be un-contactable for an indefinite time. I will be of “no fixed address”. I am outta here!
In a nut shell, (or a chicken egg or any other small enclosed receptical) I am running away from my problems.
I shall head north. To where the Sun doeth shine. To where I am anywhere else but here.
Hopefully, I will sort myself out in sunnier climes. If not at least I will get a suntan.
See you somewhere, sometime.
Lotus scrutinized the letter with a critical eye (meanwhile the other eye, the not-so-critical eye, the free-to-be-me eye, played with the light reflecting off the plate glass windows of the shop beside her. The un-critical eye, perved at the guy walking past. The living-in-the-world-right-now-at-this-moment eye was doing it's own thing.
This had the unfortunate side-effect of making her seem a bit wierd. One eye doing what it was told to and the other doing it's own thing.
But that critical eye; why it was doing it's thing to well. It was reading that letter, making judgements, picking up spelling and grammar errrors and enjoying itself just a little too much.
Too many clichés, doesn’t give the reader enough information, incomplete sentences and very gloomy. I guess she had at least learnt something at Uni. she had learnt how to criticize a piece of writing, if nothing else. It was too late to re-write now, it would have to do.
Lotus hoped Penny knew her well enough towould pick up on the humor as well as the serious shit. She hopped her friend, her bestest friend in the whole world would not take it too seriously and come looking for her. She figured what she needed most right now was lonely time. Time to figure this whole mess out. Time to hide from everyone who might judge.Hopefully Penny would get the humour and not take it as seriously as it sounded when Lotus read the letter back to herself.
Please get my humour she thought.
Humor was the only thing left holding Lotus’s life together. If she lost that she’d really be up shit creek.
She re-folded the piece of paper, pushed it into the envelope and wrote Penny’s address on the front. Then she flipped it over and because she would have no address.
Lotus stood before the once red, now orange post box. She switched her weight from foot to foot. Suddenly she was over come with uncertainty. She felt like the fool in the Tarot Deckone foot off the edge. Was she about to make a leap of faith or was she about to jump into the abyss?
An elbow nudged Lotus. An arm was reaching past her. The arm attached to the elbow put a letter into the slot. It was that easy.
The turn of the hour from three to four o’clock seemed to have heralded a bizarre magic. Maybe it was the planetry alignments, maybe it was poobah in the Sky had had enough and she decide to fast forward a few lessons, maybe it was a quantun physics kind of thing....but it was something... for all over the country strange things where afoot.
In far north Queensland the owner of the Laura Pub was leaving his bungalow. He was on his way to the bar to clean up before Friday afternoon happy hour. He pulled his door closed behind him and walked towards the Pub. The veranda boards creaked in the same place as usual and his hand swatted flies away from his face of its own accord.
As he came to the end room in the row of bungalows he glanced in the open door. He took another half step forward before his feet stopped and his mouth fell open. He too a half step back. He looked in through the bungalow door again. The new barmaid was glowing. Not in the way a healthy pregnant woman is said to glow, but literally glowing. Like she had swallowed a handful of LED lights.
A foggy white light appeared to be emanating from her body and now that his heart had stopped pounding so hard in response to the first phenonomen and he was silent he could hear a gentle humming coming from the room. But the barmaid did not seem to be moving her lips. She wasn't humming, she was humming. Well, that makes about as much sense as a tit on a Nun Pete told himself.
Pete had seen the girl meditating before, sitting on the end of her bed in that strange hat, and staring into her bowl of water like she was trying to see the future in a crystal ball. She was obviously soem kind of new age nutter. But that sound. She wasn't making it but it seemed to be coming from her.
Pete had seen a lot of weird things in his time but he had never seen anything like this. He started to dwell on the phenomenon but then common sense kicked in. This is bloody stupid, he told him self. His subconscious mind told him to listen but he knew better. He shook his head and didn't wat for the proof; this was weird shit. He didn’t want to rack his brains trying to find an explanation. He had enough on his mind.
Pete turned back towards the Pub and continued along the veranda. He began to hum. Perhaps his head was foggy from his lunch time pint.
On a busy street in Adelaide a juggler entertained the homeward bound commuters. Most of the work affected were in too much of a hurry to get home and take off their week-day-worker masks, to notice the way he expertly juggled or to ponder how the juggler managed to maintain such a peaceful countenance in the midst of all the traffic and noise. A little grey man managed a weak smile and a nod to acknowledge the poor juggler, whom he pitied because he didn’t have a real, important job like the grey man. A bouncy woman rattled her pockets to show that she had no money and contorted her face into a grimace that was meant to convey: ‘but believe me, if I had money I’d happily chuck a handful into your hat.’
A couple with their arms around each other and a chasm full of silence between them stopped briefly to watch. The woman noticed the fluid graceful movements of the performer’s dance and smiled sadly remembering how she used to like to dance. Then the man pulled her away.
The juggler juggled on until inexplicably he dropped an orange.
He caught the other two oranges and the three knives but a small frown flashed briefly in his eyes. He rarely made mistakes, but they weren’t unknown. The Universe was trying to tell him something. He crouched on one knee on the pavement so he could watch the orange bounce down the gutter and into the traffic. 'Nothing happens without a reason' the juggler was fond of saying. There is a lesson in every detail, a message in every action.
The run-away orange seemed to defy the laws of physics the way it bounced out of the path of peak hour cars and buses. It seemed destined to the fate of premature-juicing. But the juggler saw the orange reach the other side of the street.
Having interpreted the message of the fruity fugitive the performer stood and smiled. He packed away his knives and transferred the few coins from his hat to his pocket. He picked up his bag of tricks and with a knowing smile began to peel one of the remaining oranges. Juice ran down his chin as he bit into the fruit and he laughed at the absurdity of it all and walked away down the street.
Rocket Boy was sitting very still. He was contemplating the Butterfly Effect, a theory that suggests that the Universe is an interconnected swirling mass of energy. The theory says that life is a series of cause and effects events.
Rocket Boy was blown away by the story of the butterfly. The innocent insect flapping its wings on one continent could set in motion a chain of events that ultimately caused a cyclone in a distant part of the world. Was this true or was it just the after effects of too many drugs?
Rocket Boys eyes were beginning to water because he held his eyelids rigid. He was trying not to blink. He didn’t want to be responsible for a Tsunami in Asia.
His arm itched but he didn't want to set off some catestrophic event.
He tried to be still.
But his mmind wandered. And it wondered. He couldn’t be responsible if he didn’t mean to cause it could he? Did good intentions count here? What if he farted and caused some horrible instant global warning effect?
Oh fuck it!
He was too tired for this sort of meditation.
Instead of expanding, his fatigued mind just seemed to be going in circles. Carefully let his eyes close and let out a sigh… just a small one…
…and as Rocket Boy sighed, a cool wind made Lotus shiver. She stopped procrastinating and pushed the letter into the slot of the red post box. The envelope tumbled down and in darkness landed on a stack of other correspondence. There it waited patiently for the five o’clock Post man.