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

viernes, 3 de marzo de 2017

Cold town

   It started very early one morning, as everyone in town was sleeping. It was very unusual but every single person was asleep and didn’t see the clouds forming in the darkness and the first tiny rocks of hail fall from the sky. What awoke most of them, hours later, was the sound of thousands of little balls of ice falling from the sky and hitting their windows and roofs with a certain insistence. Only some dared to go outside and check on their belongings like cars and such. It wasn’t safe.

 The white curtain created by the downpour looked almost solid at one moment. Everyone was fascinated by it, mainly because they had never really seen hail or anything similar to ice falling from the sky. The small town was located in a warm area, not that far from the sea. So the occurrence of a hailstorm was extremely rare and certainly very special for everyone there. Every social gathering was canceled and every family had to stay home, without studying or working.

 This resulted in very interesting conversations between members of families. People that didn’t really have a great relationship started speaking about something that they thought was interesting and harmless in a way too. They hall had theories as to why they had been hit by a hailstorm but the most people popular theory was that there was a cold front that came rushing in from the south and it collided with the very warm weather of their valley and then created the hail.

 The point was that everyone now was talking, every house in town had member that were now sharing thoughts and, after a few hours, those theories did not have a limit: some people found it easier then to explain to their children how babies came into the world and children would understand very fast. Other families discussed things they had left buried and unspoken and suddenly they were all solving problems that had been harassing them for years.

 It was difficult to explain. Some blamed the actual hail, others the temperature and others the fact that people had been made to stay in the same rooms and houses as their families, making them talk to each other. But they could have stayed as before, not speaking and having secrets from one another. There was something, some kind of special mood that made the families share what they had been ignoring on purpose for so long. Of course, not every scene in town was of love and beauty. Some were harsh as the truth is not always the prettiest of situations.

 But they talked and that was advancement. In a town were many fathers refused to hug and kiss their sons, it was a huge progress that they had started doing that, as the storm grew stronger towards the afternoon. Many years later, some elders said the water contained in the fallen hail had formerly been holy water from a special source. Others said a native shaman had enchanted the pieces of ice with a spell to make people truthful. They all had different and imaginative answers.

 It appeared to be that people were afraid to say they had feelings and that they had acknowledged that for a moment. Because after the storm, everything returned to normal and it made the situation in town much harder than usual. It was the reason for many of the younger people to leave that region and look for a better place for them. They had tasted a bit of something they had loved and now they wanted their lives to be exactly like that all the time, filled with love and not secrets.

 The elders and most of the parents returned to their old ways of not talking to their children and keeping all of who they were deep into themselves. Inside, they feared that they may have gone too overboard with their display of feelings but no one really thought it was like that. Everyone agreed that being open was the best option for all but they all thought this in secret. They did not dare to change what they had been doing for so long, even after the so-called magic in the hail.

 All the inhabitants that had been born over thirty years ago had develop something like a shell around them. They all had it and it was because during their times as children and teenagers, the exposure of feelings and displays of affection were deemed a weakness and something real men wouldn’t do. As for women, it was something one could expect from them but it should never be discussed or addressed in any way. In that part of the world, people had been raised to be like that.

 Young people had also been raised like that but it was the hailstorm that awoke something in them. It made them realize that things didn’t have to be as they had always been. Maybe there could be a little bit more honesty or love in the world. With the memories of everything said and done during the hailstorm, they decided to leave their homes as soon as they were able to and made a promise to always look for a truthful life, never falling back to the old ways of their families and ancestors. That’s why they all left, leaving that small town to die slowly.

 The ones that stayed there died in the following years, at a faster rate than normal. People from other regions came to investigate, as the mortality rate had accelerated in a fantastic manner. Some believed it had to do with a mysterious disease or something like that but no disease was ever found among the dead. Yet, for some reason, every inhabitant of that town was dying much younger than normal and out of nowhere, without any symptoms prior to their untimely death.

 Every day someone died and only one baby was born in the span of six months. Those rare babies would also day after a couple of days. Some people left town during those times but they weren’t many, just scared of death. Maybe that had made them decided they were maybe better off somewhere else. But that was a very rare decision to make, as most people stayed in town to die. Some days one, some other days up to five people would die. All in peace, not violently.

 They were no memorial services, not for any of the dead. They were just buried in the graveyard, and that was it. Life continued after that but in melancholic manner, as if it was slowly giving up on everything that had a beating heart. Investigators looking into the deaths reported in town, were driven away not long after by the sadness and depressing vibes that place had for people that did have warm blood running through their bodies, making them alive.

 The thing was that, all of the people there, the ones that had stayed, were not alive anymore, not like a normal human being. They had been dead inside for quite some time, way before the day the hailstorm hit them with its mysterious aura. It wasn’t anyone’s fault but theirs that they were cold and emotionless. They had decided to be like that, blaming their parents and their beliefs. They decided to accept the world as it was, instead of trying to leave their personal mark in it.

 A couple of years later, every single inhabitant of that town was dead. The graveyard came to be one of the largest in that country and only curious eyes would visit it. Family would not come and friends had never existed. Their houses slowly crumbled to pieces and in a couple of decades, no one even remembered such a place ever existed. And no one ever tried to rebuilt or anything like that. It was a done deal.

martes, 30 de agosto de 2016

A single moment

   The very next day, the garden was covered with a very fine layer of snow covering everything. The most beautiful flowers and the largest plants were all covered in white, giving everything a “frozen in time” appearance. The house inhabitants had never seen snow, so when the first workers saw it that morning, they didn’t really know what to think. The low temperatures that winter were something they had never seen either so it was a very particular season for everyone.

 The first person to see the garden covered in snow was Mrs. Ross, the cook of the house. She had been living there for so many years but had never seen anything quite like that. She was so surprised that breakfast that morning was not ready on time and some people and the family had to wait or go hungry for a couple of extra hours.

As curious as everyone was for what was happening, every person coming late to work, showing up minutes later for a date or simply not coming because they had seen snow, were all excused as if it was the most normal thing. The snowfall lasted for about a week and then it disappeared. People were very disappointed when snow melted and everything they had thought was so magical was now covered in this very thick layer of mud that was nowhere near as attractive as snow. People returned to their normal lives and the winter experience was soon a thing of stories.

 The house were the garden had been covered suffered severe transformations between the first snowfall ever and the following one, which took place fifty years later. Some of the people that had seen it the first time as kids were still alive and they didn’t get tired of telling the story once and again, as if people were not living through it. It was possibly because of the excitement and because not a lot of things happened around there.

 The garden of the house was still there but the place was no longer a private place. It had been converted not so long ago into a museum after the family that had lived there for generations had decided to sell to the best bidder because every single part of their business, now related to the technology industry, was located nowadays in the city and having such a grand state in the countryside was very expensive to maintain.

 So the building had become a place where people could learn about the past but also where they could remember and experience in a very special way the two times snow had fallen in the region. There were pictures and poems and various others artistic manifestations, remembering what had happened in a variety of ways.

 There was even a picture of the cook that had been the first one to see snow. Her descendants came for the opening day of the museum and were very happy to see their relative love forever in such a fabulous space. More pictures, drawings and so on were placed all over the house, which had been decorated in a way it had never probably been decorated before. The museum had disguised the house as something it wasn’t, trying to get more and more people to come and enjoy the place.

 Soon, that wasn’t enough so they had to integrate the various areas surrounding the house, in other words the rest of the state that was still being exploited by a private company. Some parts of the land were used to grow various organic vegetables and others had fruit with the largest portion been dedicated to grapes and a small processing plant where the best grapes were chosen to be sent to another place where they were turned into a very decent wine. It wasn’t the best but it wasn’t bad either.

 The people who ran the museum decided to make it all part of the daily walks around the house. They wanted to show the visitors how farming worked in the region so they also created a small petting zoo and worked with a foreign company in order to use the grapes in the farm to make their own brand of wine. Of course, the first few bottles wouldn’t be very good but with time they could end up having one of the best products because of the experts they were hiring to ensure that everything was as good as it could be.

 People really enjoyed the new additions to the museum. Now it was a more complete experience and many visitors didn’t even care to enter the museum, the enjoyed themselves thoroughly in the fields and with the animals. Various vegetables and fruits were added to the crop selection and the wine started being sold to supermarkets in the city with a very special sticker that invited everyone to witness the creation process of the beverage.

 That proved to be a very good move and visits increased once again. The bad thing was that the museum was not being visited as much as it had been before. The situation was so bad for the house as it was that they decided to make it a free entrance if you cared to buy a pass for all the rest of the attraction in the state. That helped the snowfall story become well known once again.

 The place was renamed Snowfall Fun Park and they dedicated themselves to find new ways to attract more customers each year. After the name change, they were able to convert a small yard that had only been used for maintenance into a small food court selling various foods from around the world. The place was packed daily.

 The biggest news coming from the park was the announcement that they had bought the whole neighboring terrain, which was almost as large as the one they were operating in currently. They would use all that land to build an area for rides and overall entertainment. Every single thing would be themed around snow and winter sports. The main attraction would be a huge roller coaster named the Yeti, which had almost no relation with the region except for the fact that those fantastic creatures allegedly lived in the snow.

 The construction of that area was halted when they discovered some bones and rock alignments that seemed to be very interesting to the scientific community. As it turns out, it had been forgotten that the area had been the place for the old homes of the main house workers were located. The famous cook had lived right there and it was her bones that the machines almost crushed to dust.

 When her DNA was picked up from them, traditionalists in the region were appalled that such a beloved person would have been died in a place no one knew about and now they had discovered she had never been properly buried anywhere. Many signed a petition to have her remains be buried in the garden of the main house, as a gesture of respect to her legacy and the lives of all the other workers and farmers of the region.  After all, she had been a very humble woman, not wealthy or anything like that.

 Some even argued that the remains of the houses should not be moved and should be integrated in the project, in order to bring back the main interest why people would go to that place. The company that operated the park was at first very reluctant to make any changes because of the investors but they eventually saw a way they could win with it.

 The excavations of the remains of the houses were left alone. The design of the roller coaster was changed in order to not have any negative effects over any of the older structures in the park. Every other building stayed the same as in the original expansion plans except for an area where they would have meet and greets with actual farmers and have classes for interested visitors. That was moved to the farm area in order to surround the exaction area with a low fence and feature it as an attraction.

 Five years later, the third snowfall was registered in the region. It had been so many years since the last one that people were happy to have their museum in order to remember the story. Parties and festivals were organized and the legacy of a single moment in history kept on living on the minds and hearts of the people.

sábado, 12 de marzo de 2016

Tragic triangle

   It all happened so fast. People crossing the pedestrian bridge above were able to see it all. But who couldn’t want to see all of that, you would like to see how lives end and how tragedies happened?

 The SUV was driving extremely fast. Eileen, the driver, was worried about so many things. She had just received vey bad news and just wanted to head back home or anywhere she could feel safer, loved and appreciated. She had been crying and was in no state to drive. But there had been no one to tell her that, no one that could stop her from making that mistake.

 On the other side were the Martins. Joanna and her husband Matt were in a small car coming back from the hospital. They had received troubling news: Joanna was pregnant with their fourth child. Normally, a couple would be happy and celebrating. But in the Martin’s car, there were only long faces and sighs. Raising such a big family was very hard on them. They had stopped doing all those nice things life has to offer to invest them in education and diapers and food and so on. Their children were too young to understand but they really needed that time off.

 But they had been silly and that’s why they were pregnant again. If they didn’t want more children, the solution would have been really easy. Well, apparently not easy enough for Joanna and Matt who kept having unprotected sex just because they had been together for over fifteen years. Actually, that was the other thing. They weren’t really that attracted to each other anymore. They didn’t feel anything when the other got naked near them in the mornings or even when they showered together. That’s what Matt was thinking when he got distracted, let the car go a bit to far to the left and then it was chaos.

 Eileen was so furious, so sad and so broken that, at first she just let gravity do its job. Her body was propelled out of the window just after the two cars had crashed against each other, done several circular turns and then hit the side of the road. When she was conscious of what had happened, Eileen realized she was on the ground, probably bleeding and not really able to move. She could feel the wind caused by the passing cars and felt suddenly even lonelier than ever before. How could people be so mean, so awful, that they wouldn’t even stop for an accident?

 Joanna and Matt had been wearing their security belts and that was good because their car had been flipped over. The baby chair they had in the back was one against the roof of the car and they were both bleeding but still breathing normally. Matt was the first to wake up and he was so scared the first thing he did was liberate himself from the belt and they try to get out. In his attempt, breaking the window with a kick, he realized his wife was there. Of course he had known this all the time, but it was as if his survival skills had made him forgot about her, at least for a minute.

 He then screamed and Eileen heard him, far away, but clearly. She then knew there were more people involved but, somehow, she couldn’t care less if they felt as miserable and broken as she was. Because even with so much physical pain, Eileen’s heart was the one that hurt the most. She even began to cry right there in the pavement, not even trying to lift a leg or an arm. She just lay there and cried her eyes out, thinking about how she had run into her long time girlfriend with another woman. And they weren’t kissing or touching. She even felt disgusted, truly sick about it and she vomited.

 Joanna was bleeding. She had hit her head during the accident and Matt was worried he couldn’t be able to move her like that. He decided that it was best to get out of the car and ask for help or see if there was any police coming or ambulance or whatever was available. He cut his hands with the glass but tried to ignore the pain and just stumbled out and suddenly passed out. He only did for a few minutes but during that time he dreamt about the time it was only him and Joanna. He remembered their first date, how they had planned to eat in this fancy Italian restaurant but then had problems with the reservation and they ended up having some tacos in fancy outfits. They really loved each other that day.

 After crying so much, Eileen opened her eyes and realized she really needed to start thinking about what was happening and decided to try and stand up but the thought of Erika and that woman together were like a film in her head that she wasn’t able to shut down. It hurt her badly because they had been together for a long time and they were doing all these things together like looking for an apartment and even planning to get a baby through adoption. It had been Eileen who had met Erik when she was a girl afraid of the world and with no knowledge about anything. She had been the more mature woman that taught her everything that she may need to know and apparently she had learned it all too well.

 Like trying to scare some flies away, she moved her arm a bit and finally tried to stand up but realized she couldn’t. She could only see forwards because of her position but had a feeling there was something wrong with her legs. Having been so worried about Erika, she had not realized that her legs didn’t feel as before. They did not feel at all.

 Matt woke up from his dream and realized there was a man running towards him and asking him so many questions. It seemed to be a policeman but he really had no idea. He answered what he could, not even knowing if it made any sense and then heard an ambulance and a fire truck.

 He stood up by himself, trembling and with pain all over his body, and saw that there was another car that had been involved but he couldn’t see anyone in the driver’s seat. Maybe that person was also trapped or maybe that person had fled the scene. His mind was everywhere and nowhere at the same time. Thinking hurt him but he couldn’t stop doing it. He walked to his car and a fireman asked him to remain away for the moment. He nodded and decided to wander off in the opposite direction. He didn’t care about the voices that spoke to him, policeman and people on the bridge above. He couldn’t hear them and felt everything was slowing down so every single sound made no sense to him.

 The paramedics picked up Eileen first and she remained awake during the whole trip to the hospital. However, she wasn’t able to speak. She really wanted to answer the questions, she really wanted someone to know that it was all her fault and that she had been cheated on but nothing came out of her throat. Her heart was still hurting to much and, with morphine, she felt a little bit better and then fell into an uneven sleep in which she would imagine entering several room and in some of them Erika was with the other woman and in other she could see her parents or herself when she was just a little girl. She recalled her past times back then and how much she loved horses.

 The second person to get into an ambulance was Joanna. Her husband nowhere to be found, she had to board the ambulance alone after several men were necessary to pull her out of the car and then up into the ambulance. She was bleeding internally, as determined by the instruments used by the paramedics. The driver was ordered to rush to the hospital but only two minutes after that they told him there was no real emergency anymore. Joanna was stable but she had lost her child, so they didn’t have to be fast to save anyone.

 Matt kept walking until a distracted old man run over him. The car lifted him and pushed him to the side of the road. The old man didn’t stop to see what he had done. Matt lay there and then came back to his body for a while. And realized how miserable he was, he realized how sad he had been for so long and it was all because his life had failed to be what he wanted. He loved Joanna and the kids but he wanted so much more from life, so much more than responsibility.

 In the hospital, Eileen was put in the room next to Joanna, who got better quickly but got almost insane when she was notified about the baby. Then she learned, through a nurse, that Eileen was in the other side of the wall, so she tried to choke her with a pillow, because the nurse had told her it was Eileen who was to blame for the crash. It was the only way Eileen came back to the real world and the only way Joanna could realize how ready she was to be a mother again, when she couldn’t be one anymore.

 Meanwhile, Matt lay there in the pavement. And cried too.

lunes, 6 de abril de 2015

Own poison

   I’m empty.  Have you ever felt, at least for a moment, that there’s no more gasoline inside of you? What I mean is, sometimes we just run out. We stop and there’s nothing to keep us going, at least for that very moment. And it feels eternal, like years and years could be put inside a small grain of sand and relived in a single breath. Everything seems still and it’s maddening because the human body, the human soul is not built for such hardship. We are made to be and to move and if we stop we just go insane.

 I did go insane for a little while. I felt the world crumbling around me, cracks opening on the floor and darkness in front of me. In that moment, there’s only you and no one else. Your friends, your family, they do not matter because you fall hard and deep into oblivion where no one could ever find you. And then that darkness penetrates your heart and makes you scream in terror without even opening your mouth. It is the feeling of real pain, of universal rendition to the darkest feelings and situations that the human heart can go through. In that moment, we are lost.

 But it always ends. Or at least for me, it has always ended. The light comes back and the back seems the same although I feel particularly changed inside. The feeling might be compared to the one you feel when riding a rollercoaster but blind and even deaf. That’s what it feels to fall into you and to get lost for the fraction of a second. When you come back, nothing really has happened outside your mind but you know it did happen inside. And then, like a poison, madness settles in. It slowly contaminates the brain, working for years, slowly. This poison has no real antidote but it can be stopped, maybe not forever but at least for enough time to build a stronger armor to defend your mind.

 Isn’t it amazing? We wage wars against each other, killing so many of our fellow men ad women and in the end of it all, our own brains can be our most vicious enemies, tearing us apart from the inside out. What good does it make to live your life dodging bullets and dangers, when maybe the thing that will take your life away from you is just growing freely inside, deep in your brain. We take everything, even the fact that we are just flesh and bone, for granted. We do not realize that there’s nothing that makes us really strong in front of the many dangers we might be forced to encounter in our lives.

 And it the world today, the younger brains, the ones least trained in the arts of fighting oneself, are those who are more likely to succumb to the evilness inside our brains. We all have it inside, there’s no one who doesn’t rot like that. The difference is that some people have received that click, that activation code that makes us realize the threat inside. And it passes so many times when we are young, when we are supposed to be living so many things and learning and enjoying life. That is because we are absorbing so much that we cannot control what enters our brain. And then, the poison begins contaminating the mind and in some youngsters, it happens so fast, with so much fierceness, that when others notice it it’s simply too late.

 Many people talk nowadays about the terrible cancer that extinguishes people in a heartbeat. AIDS does the same, consuming people fast. But there’s not that same awareness or interest in the mental issues of the human body. Our most appreciated tool, our brain, is also weak. No matter how hard the skull or how trained the mind is, the brain can also be affected and we are one of the biggest threats to it.

 The world today is the reason. We have to be so many things at the same time and do some others to be and be to be accepted because that is supposed to give all the peace we need. But that is a lie because we are never really accepted except by some individuals. Isn’t it strange that people what acceptance by everyone and they decide to ignore the fact that they will only know a small portion of the humans inhabiting this world in their lifetime? And even if they could meet everyone in the world, those others humans also do and think and are in order to be someone in this tiny grain of rock in space.

 We do not realize that we are competing, and hard, for the exact same prize, which happens to be non-existent. Because no one is never accepted, no even by all the people they know. And we all do that; we all do and say things to benefit ourselves, to keep moving, to be noticed and appreciated. Even if our main goal seems to be another, we are always looking for acceptance. Many have love as a goal and what is love but the acceptance, by someone else, of you as their chosen romantic interest? And if your goal is to have a job, you have to woo certain people to get it, by working hard or through any other means.

 It all comes down to people liking you, of that sick obsession with everyone needing and wanting you to be there by their side. And obsession that has its root in the past, when our species felt it needed to unite or it would face extinction. We are now many millions and still we think we need to be all on top of each other. That’s why countries always meddle in the problems of other countries: not only they need to show their power but also because they are desperate for allies and friends and companions. As if we weren’t already just by being born in this world. We do not need acceptance but a simple reality check to tell us how exactly alike we all are. No one better, no one worse. No one nothing. We are all the same thing which is, by the end of the day, not that much.

 When I feel empty, I feel like I cannot breath, as if the world was all around me, pressing me from every corner trying to make me explode. Once, the poison reached a point in my brain where I collapsed and was in the mercy of my most basic instincts. I attempted to destroy myself and felt liberated when I felt I had succeeded. There’s no feeling in the world like blood running down your forehead. You know why? Because you feel alive. Isn’t that sick?

 It is. If the only way to feel, to be able to communicate is to smash your head against a wall, something has to be very wrong. “Talk to your family”. That’s the advice I followed and it helped. Not because they said something really useful but because I realized I couldn’t go forward with the plans that the poison had for me. I just couldn’t sacrifice what I am and put them on the way. I stopped and held back from ending it all. And I didn’t do it for me. I understood things have more consequences than we realize. Sometimes we are so driven by what’s inside us, that we just don’t see what is happening around us. But I did.

 People would love me to say that I stopped for me, because I had some kind of revelation and just realized how much worse the world would get without me. But that would be a lie because the world wouldn’t realize I was gone, only a fraction of it would. And I stopped for that fraction and for nothing else. If it had been for the world, solely for that, I would have gone through with it. But I didn’t and here we are.

 I’m not strong. You don’t really require strength to stop the poison inside your head; you only need time and distractions. Because of you’re having a great time, it all seems to happen too fast. Have you ever noticed that? The poison hasn’t. And the idea is that when you die, the poison is there, contained because it had been distracted for years and years. That’s all you need. Again, you just need to do. Just do.

 That’s what I’m doing, trying to keep the thoughts, the sounds, the feelings, all at bay. I write because I like to do it, it’s true. And because it’s the only thing I feel I do well. But mostly, and many people do not know this, I do it to keep everything from touching me too close. I’ve been successful for the most part of the recent months with a couple of incidents where I just had to take a breath and relax, in order to not let anything inside win any ground.

 One of my weaknesses is when people say to many nice things to me. I mean, they are nice and gentle and even if they don’t really know me that well, I thank them. But when they happen too often I feel they are lies and they start hurting bad, like huge burns. And then the poison starts moving and I decide to chop every arm, every single thing that may let it move more, even if I have to sacrifice some things many others would appreciate.

 It was long ago that I decided not to have any romance in my life, at least none for real. Because I discovered that was the easiest way to let the poison, to let me, kill myself.