Mostrando las entradas con la etiqueta boat. Mostrar todas las entradas
Mostrando las entradas con la etiqueta boat. Mostrar todas las entradas

jueves, 7 de julio de 2016

By the lake

   On his request, I sat outside the trailer, sitting on my green folding chair. I could hear his rattling inside and wondered what he was doing. Of course, I knew he was cooking because, earlier in the day, I had seen him fishing for a long time. He had woken up at the crack of dawn to do it and when I got up he was still there, very quiet and with his headphones blasting some rock music into his ears.

 I scared him a bit when I kissed him on the cheek without notice. He almost fell from the stool where he sat when he fished. But after his initial scare, he took off his headphones, kissed me back and greeted me wit a huge smile. His bucket was fool and he was very proud to announce he was going to cook lunch for the both of us. I tried to tell him I didn’t really ate fish, had never really been into it, but he didn’t let me say a word. He was too excited.

 So I stayed outside as he cooked his very special recipe. He had caught enough trout to last us for the rest of the week. The lake was filled with them or so they said. As he did his thing, I sat down outside and enjoyed the sunny day. This was after we had showered and had some breakfast, something simple not to steal the leading spot to the fish we were going to eat later in the day. He was so excited about it that I just smiled and nodded at everything he said.

 The lake was a very peaceful place, even for a spot were so many small hotels were located. There was also a very big presence of people who practiced several types of watersports. Some even brought their sailing boats in order to practice for competitions. It was kind of relaxing watching them go from one side of the lake to the other, floating over water so easily it made your soul feel at ease.

 Paul came out of the trailer for a bit, only to tell me he had already gutted the fish and it was ready to cook. But it wasn’t even midday yet so he decided to step outside and seat next to me. His folding chair was yellow and mine was green, our favorite colors. He took my hand and relaxed, watching the birds fly by and feeling the beautiful breeze that made waves on the lake.

 It was a cold wind too, as the lake was located up in the mountains. But the day was unusually sunny and people were visibly trying to enjoying at its fullest. As the day went by, I could see more boats on the lake, even those ones in the shape of ducks and other creatures. We waved at them laughing, as it was a little bit ridiculous. But it was so much fun, especially with him by my side.

 After a while, he went in again saying it was time for cooking. I almost entered the trailer behind him to go to the bathroom but he prevented me from doing so. He said he didn’t want me to see any of it so I had to remain outside. I told him I really needed to go to the bathroom, as I had drunk a very big glass of orange juice. My throat was a bit sore and I thought the juice would help in making me feel a little better.

 Paul told me to go to one of the hotel or something. At first, I thought he was joking but then I realized he wasn’t. He was very serious and the whole place smelled strongly to fish. So I decided to tell him to let everything exactly as it was before and then I stepped out. He even closed the door on me, which I thought it was unnecessary but apparently he felt he was going to do something so incredible that it was better to keep it a complete secret, even from me.

 I smiled. My heart belonged to him and I knew he had always dreamt about being a real chef. He was always buying and reading cooking books at home and he often tried to do what he had learned in our kitchen. The difference was that he couldn’t really kick me out of our own place. I think he did that by the lake because he felt the place called for it and I couldn’t agree more.

 So instead of insisting, I decided to go for a walk and explore the vicinity as Paul did what he had to do. I started walking by the edge of the lake, watching people having fun in their boats. Some were riding one of those floating things that you ride and when it too bouncy you fall into the water. I really wanted to try that but then I realized it wouldn’t be too nice if I showed up wet to lunch.

 I kept on walking and remembered I needed to go to the bathroom. So I woke up a small hill and arrived to a small hotel that handled some cottages overlooking the lake. It was also the hotel that managed the area we had parked our trailer, so it made sense to ask for the bathroom there. The owner was a very nice lady who seemed to be as old as time. However, she moved very fast and seemed to have her senses in much better shape that most people.

 She gave me the keys to her private bathroom and it took my only a couple of minutes to be done. I cleaned my face watching myself on her mirror and realized I looked rather good. We all have those days when we think we look particularly great. We also have those other days when we think we look awful but, thank God, I hadn’t had one of those in a long time. In my day to day, I rarely used the mirror but the bathroom was so small it was not really easy to avoid looking yourself in it.

 When I was done, I thank the owner and decided to keep walking around the lake. I decided to make a full circle around it, as it wasn’t that big and I knew Paul needed time to cook. So I started walking, by another hotel and then a patch of tall grass filled with mosquitoes. I almost had to go into the water to avoid it. After that, there was a small forest of eucalyptus trees. It was nice to see the brown leaves on the ground and the sound they made as I walked on them. There were birds chirping and I could even feel there were squirrels somewhere above me.

 As I came out of the forest, I noticed someone had a problem in the lake. A lady in of those rowing boats was calling for help. Apparently her husband wasn’t feeling very well. She was yelling towards a place located further ahead on my path. It was the rental area where people that weren’t staying in any of the hotels could just grab a boat and have some fun for a couple of hours.

 I glanced at the woman and then at the rental area and noticed two men getting into a motorboat, going to the rescue of the poor woman. I kept on walking as they arrived by her and grabbed her husband who couldn’t apparently move. Probably a heart attack or something of the sort. She jumped from their boat to the other and then one of the guys that had come for them tied the rowboat to theirs with a rope. It looked nice how one little boat tagged along with the other. The journey to the shore was rather short.

 By then I realized I was halfway from my trailer. I tried to see if Paul was looking for me yet but I couldn’t see anyone waving or anything like that. Even if he had been outside, I doubt he would have seen me, as we were but very shortsighted. One of the many things in common we had. So I kept on walking through a very large area with only grass and some floors growing in peace, with no one grabbing them or taking them home.

 I sat down there for a while and breathed in a lot of that fresh mountain air. Then, I lay on the grass, enjoying how it felt, closing my eyes to try and seal that memory into my mind forever. It was very nice to be there, after so many things had happened to us in the last year. It hadn’t been easy at all but this small trip was kind of a prize for the both of us. I stood up and kept on walking, thinking we were much stronger than we thought.

 My last stop was close to our trailer, were lots of people were raising kites into the sky. There were lots of children but also adults that tried to teach them the proper technique to make everything perfect. I looked at their kites for several minutes, floating high in the air, doing the most peaceful think I could ever imagine. It was so nice to be there and not thinking about anything else.

 When I neared the trailer, I felt the smell of food. As I sat on my chair, he came out with a white wine bottle, which he poured into two glasses. We made a toast for ourselves and for that beautiful place and then we ate, talking about everything. It was delicious, every single part of lunch. But what was much better was to have gotten there with him. That’s why my hug after finishing eating was unusually stronger.

martes, 5 de julio de 2016


   The only tree in many kilometers was an island of hope for those crossing the planes. The grass grew very green but nothing else. No one else knew the reason, but other signs of life near the tree were scarce. The people that crossed the plains, looking for a better life in the east, were almost the only signs of life in the area. Sometimes bugs will swarm around the tree, sometimes a lost mammal or some small lizard. But that was it. All the rest had gone away in a blink many years ago.

 The catastrophe had occurred in one strike, one big punch against the planet. In a matter of days, most species began to die and most tress got a very serious disease that made their trunks and leaves much weaker than ever. They would fall, piece by piece, and then rot into the ground without anyone really caring. People did not realize how important that event was until, a weak later, some people started dying.

 It was especially people that lived up in the mountains. They had no oxygen to process anymore as all the trees in those areas had died and the other vegetation was also getting sick but dying much slower. Walking around forests was forbidden, as it was a very dangerous thing to do. Besides, everyone could feel the cloud of disease in the air. It had a very particular smell and it was likely it tasted strange. At first, people used masks and special suits when encountering an affected tree.

 However, in time, people realized they had no reason to worry about the disease. It only killed plant life. But that was equally bad any way, because without the correct amount of plants in the world, no one would have any oxygen to breathe. Most scientists tried to come up with a solution for the problem, some kind of antidote that would help everywhere. But that was never found. The only thing they could do was to plant grass, which seemed to be unaffected and that’s why the plains, years later, were covered in a thick layer of grass.

 The caravans crossing the region were confused, as the color in the ground was very festive, welcoming them in a way. But the truth was that everything was dead. Besides the grass, there was nothing in the plains, not even hills or mountains or anything like that. There was only a huge space covered in green and groups of people trying to overcome te strong wind in order to get to the other side.

 Hope relied on the east as the lack of oxygen had begun in the west. Some thought it was because of a weapon someone created, and they wouldn’t be any wrong. It was all a laboratory creation that had gone really wrong. But no one really cared anymore. Seeing the lonely tree in the plain, make them realized there was no reason to complain now.

 One of the groups had been walking for around a month. Their clothes, particularly their shoes, were destroyed by the effort of walking so much. They had children and elderly people with them. However, every time someone got really sick or wouldn’t move, they just kept on walking, leaving that person behind. They couldn’t be compassionate or anything like that. The more time they spent crossing the plains, the more time they gave to that weird phenomenon to make them a big part of it.

 Many feared, with reason, that the disease of the plants could somehow be transferred to a human being. It was true that most food had died because of it, there were no crops or anything like that. But those who had eaten food around the first days of the catastrophe, were really afraid they had the disease inside of them and that they would began disintegrating just like the trees.

 But that never happened. People died out of hunger or because they couldn’t breath properly. Now most people used a special mask that tried to consume the minimal amount of oxygen. At first, it was quite a challenge to live like that, every day. But after a while, it was not really noticeable. Humankind had gotten used to other things and they would adapt to less oxygen in the atmosphere. Of course, there would be a certain level of extinction, but that’s nature.

 Each group that crossed the plains knew very well they shouldn’t stop much. They only did so when everyone, every single person, was in the need of water or food. They never stopped for only one person. If there was only one individual asking for help, they normally let him or her find a solution for their problem by their own. Most times, that person would die in just a few hours.

 The plains, so green and beautiful in a way, were like a desert. The climate was harsh because there were no trees to stop the sun getting to the ground. However, beside a few yellow patches in the grass, the ground wasn’t affected at all by the heat. There were still some rivers and lagoons, were they could recharge their bottles and other containers to have water. But the taste of it was different and it wasn’t as helpful to the body as before.

 Yet, people were persistent and walked every day and every night if that was necessary. Some groups did rest at night, but it was very unsafe or so thought others. Without any other animals, it made no sense to be scared of sleeping at night in the middle of the grass, but people still had many of the characteristics of the former humans, the people that they used to be not so long ago.

 Some groups reached the east and realized there was an ocean there they had to cross. But the first real thing they noticed was that the ocean level had dropped sharply. By the coast, they were strange formations they could identify as being from the former bottom of the sea. They could still see some fish and people grabbed them and ate them, because they were hungry and they had to put their hands on anything they could.

 In order to cross the sea, people would have to work hard and that was something to think about. After all, they had no way to breathing properly and they could die constructing any vessels. So first, they looked around and finally got to what used to be a Marina. The ocean was about ten kilometers away now. There were big yachts and smaller ships but there was the huge problem of moving it towards the water.

 They had to use a truck and some rope and try to do it slowly as the ship’s hull could break and that would mean more effort that would consume even more oxygen. But, thanks to the soft ground left by the moving sea, the ship got the coast unharmed. People got it into the ocean and sailed away. That was done by the first group to successfully cross the plains. They had lost about fifty lives in there and five more moving the boat. They were only twenty-four now. But at least they were alive in order to look for a better life abroad.

 Some had hope, still, that the disease of the plants had not reached other continents but the few people that were scientists or teachers knew that to be impossible. The world had been connected by so many ways in the past, that it was not possible for a disease to just stay in one place. It would have to be a conscious disease or something like that and, thankfully, they hadn’t found out about anything like that.

The first days of sailing were fine, but by the end of the first weekend, many got sick and some more died. They began thinking the ship would never reach the other coasts, wherever than was. Maybe they could at least meet others in order to survive together or maybe there was like a safe haven for the disease or something like that. People had to dream and have hope, because they didn’t have anything else.

 When the ship hit the other coast, only nine people were still onboard that first ship. They explored the coast and realized the strangely green grass also grew there. And there were no trees or flowers or any other types of plants. No bugs, no dogs, no nothing. They were done. They decided to keep on walking just to be able to think about something, to come up with a plan. But it would never happen. It was the end.

sábado, 7 de marzo de 2015


   I stepped in the boat and sat inside. It was not a big space and it all smell like fish but, given the circumstances, I didn’t thought I should say or do anything about those two things. Little things, might I add, compared to the situation at hand. Onboard came the man that had been pointing at me with his gun all along but then the other one, the one that seemed less likely to shoot at any given opportunity, told him to step out of there and let him do it. There was no one else that could help me and it was too dark too distinguish anything more than the water, the boat and the armed man that had stepped out and disappeared.

 The man I was with had turned the engine and we were traveling fast. The sea was calm and there seemed to be no fishing boats or ferries that could see us. It was almost as if it was meant to be that way and, of course for me, that wasn’t so good.

 After what seemed liked an hour of journey into the open sea, the man stopped the engine and looked straight at my eyes. It was unsettling, as he was one of those people with very bright eyes that make you feel uncomfortable when you look directly at them. I had always wondered if they knew they made people feel that uneasy.

-       Did you really do it?

 There it was. It had been obvious; from the moment they had kidnapped me in my home that he wanted to ask that question so bad. Right then, he seemed eager to know the truth behind all of this, probably the truth about why he was with me right in the middle of the ocean, where no one will ever hear us talk or say the most amazing of truths. I could almost tell he was sweating, the stains beneath his armpits growing, his upper lip trembling at my sight.

-       What is that I apparently did?

 The man snored a bit, smile and kind of laughing. He was nervous. It was so obvious: his hand trembled when he wiped off his sweat and his smile wasn’t the one of a man that feels safe or sure about anything anymore. Maybe, after all, the wrong man had stepped in the boat with me.

-       We were hired.
-       I assumed as much
-       You killed a family.
-       Yes.

 The man seemed to tremble once more, due to my “confession”. To be honest, I’ve never really hidden anything about what I’ve done. I’ve made my peace with it all, specially then, when I seemed so close to death. Why lie to him when he was obviously so eager to know the truth, so eager to think he knew or that he understood what his task was all about.

-       And you say it like that? So… So cool and casual? Are you crazy?
-     I’m not mentally unstable, although the fact that I’ve killed makes me very likely to have one of those fancy disorders every murderer seems to have these days.
-       How many more?

 I couldn’t contain a smirk when he asked this. Not only because I knew it would make him tremble again, but also because people were always like that, wanting the morbid little details of how I had done something or the other. It was so typical of every single person in the world to apparently feel disgusted and scared but deep down, been utterly interested in what I had to say about all the corpses I’ve created. They sometimes seem even more interested that I was when I did what I did.

-       I don’t know. I’d rather not count.
-       The people that hired told me you raped their…
-       No. That’s not true.

 The man appeared to want to leap over me but he contained himself. Apparently he thought that I was denying the truth and that made him even more frustrated and confused but the truth was, and still is, that I never raped anyone. I’ve heard the stories, on the news and so on. They said I was ruthless but then they began to say I raped people and that’s just incorrect. If I had any more feelings I would be hurt.

-       They said…
-       You trust too much on your clients. Never thought for a second they could be lying?
-       I talked with them and…
-     Oh yes, because people are incapable of lying when they hire a hitman. Is that what you are because you seem pretty bad at this?

 There. Shaking like a leaf. I know he’s scared of me, thinking I’m some kind of animal, a beast that has to be put down. But the fun thing is that he knows or feels he cannot contain me for long and, most curiously, he seems to think I’m not guilty of this all. Because, why else would he be asking all these questions? Then again, it might be only that he’s fucking scared and he’s just stalling, avoiding the killing.

-       Are you going to kill me anytime soon?
-       Shut up.
-       It was you who began the interrogation.

 The man seemed to be thinking. I bet he was trying to decide what to do next. Maybe he thought that I might be more valuable dead than alive. The police were looking for me, that’s for sure, and I had a reward sign on my head. Apparently he wasn’t as stupid as he looked, thinking of the best way to profit properly from this assignment. He could even surrender me to the police and collect the money all by himself, leaving the other idiot to mend for himself, thinking I was dead.

-       You killed many people.
-       I know.
-       And you don’t regret it?
-       No. Why should I?
-       You’re not sorry? Not even for one of those murders?

 I looked at him carefully, trying to decide what to say. There was something more in all of this, something that had eluded me from the start. The moment they had taken me from my home it had been all about the other guy, the tall one. He had threatened me, put a bag on my head, and pointed the gun straight to my heart. This guy I was with had only driven us to the dock and then had decided to kill me, at the very last minute. And then, it became clear.

-       Don’t tell me that I killed your wife or brother?

 The man went crazy when I said those words. He threw himself at me and started punching me all over: on the face, the chest, the stomach and the head. My hands were still tight behind my back so there wasn’t much I could do except moving violently, in order not only to drive him away but also to make the boat turn sideways to escape swimming. He couldn’t chase me through the ocean.

 But nothing of the sort happened. He just stopped beating the fuck outta me and decided to breath heavily, as far as he could from me. It hurt; I’m not going to say it didn’t. But there was no damage that he could do that would really hurt me. I was beyond all of that at that point. He could have stabbed me and I wouldn’t have cared at all. My lips were cracked, bleeding and all my body was numb from his punches but I wasn’t bad enough to look at him from my corners and smile.

-       Predictable.
-       Shut up…
-    You know, even if you do kill me, nothing is going to bring anyone back? It won’t happen.
-       Shut up!
-       The dead are done. Believe me, I know.

 Then, the guy pulled out the gun and pointed at me. He no longer trembled but he was still sweaty and his eyes were wide open, as if he wanted to be sure of what he was doing. I cleaned my face a bit from my blood without breaking the link between our eyes. Maybe he was going to kill me, maybe this was it for me but it didn’t matter. He was one more of my victims and that was enough for me. So I laughed.

 The bullet pierced right through my brain, coming out the other end and falling in the water. The man pushed my body to the water and left. He knew my body was going to be found and that everyone would know a murderer was now dead. And no one would be interested in knowing who killed me because I deserved it. But, in the end, I knew that just before the end he had been mine and that was all worth it.