posted on Sep, 23 2008 @ 01:52 PM
The following is a dramatization of a non-doomsday SitX, as it applies to our situation -- islanders on a wee island. I invite you, the kind
reader, to fabricate your own, and perhaps in this way, we can discover the flaws in our systems, the weak and strong points of our paradigms. If
this turns out to be useful to anyone, perhaps we'll explore more terse situations. Comments, criticism, participation welcome. Have fun!
.............it's been a long night, for both of us -- hardly any breeze and the mosquitos were seeking an entry point in the screen house all night
long. Only a few got in, but that was enough. I don't mind sleeping in the hammock, amidst the seedlings and small trees, but I'm pretty certain
my Bride is going to be sore, with her arthritic knees, hips and ankles. I'll let her sleep, wake her up with the smells of coffee and breakfast.
I slip through the screened entry room, gently keeping the cats out with my foot; they miss sleeping with their mama. They are hungry. Only the
high-flying birds are ever around, and I haven't seen a rodent here in months.
The sea looks a tad rough this morning; I wash my face and grab a handful of sea grape leaves for the morning ablutions. Why did I ever think two
cases of TP would be "enough"? I shouldn't have traded any of them. They were priceless.
The wild chickens are up already, and I wander down the trail past the well and check the figure-4 cage traps, but no chickens. I'm tired of fowl
The coals from last night's banked fire in the caboose [ a sand box for cooking] are still viable, and I spark up a small fire with the seasoned wood
we split yesterday. Walking away from the screenhouse, I put eight beans in the grinder and crank it until it's smooth and flour-like, dump into
the cup of the worn-out espresso press, fill the bottom and put it on the rack above the small fire. Next to it, I put the SS pot and dip two cups
of water from the bucket into it. Something -- maybe the cats, but I don't think so -- has been after the squirrelfish drying on the racks. No
matter. Everybody's gotta eat.
Thunder in the distance. That's good. Garden needs watering, and so do the fruit trees. I sit down to peel the husk from a yellow-skinned
coconut, carefully setting the husk aside for later shredding, and as I crack it and capture the water, I hear my darlin' groan, roll over and see
her wander over to the bowl of washing water.
"mmmft. Don't you wash your face in the mornings?"
"I washed in the sea. Rough today. Might have to fish from shore or walk up to the bay."
"Smells good..... what're we having?"
"rice, Jamaican thyme, coconut and last week's kingfish..... coffee?"
"please." she say, reaching for her cup.
I pour her four ounces of expresso, drop a little coconut milk in from the jar. She smiles, takes a sip, and opens the aluminum box, scraching off
another day on the inside of the lid.
"November 1st today." she says.
When the rice, coconut and thyme has hydrated, I add the slices of kingfish and let them steam. I cut two limes in half; tree is old and looking
tired, but it still produces well.
She changes her clothes she slept in and straps on her knife in the small of her back. The clouds are looking angry, and she opens up the aluminum
case again, looking at the small barometer, tapping the glass.
"barometer's dropping; a tenth since last night."
I nod, dishing up our breakfast and give the cats a little. They'll get the pan later, after it cools.
"Can you make some more hooks? We're down to three..... "
"I don't want us to fish alone anymore. Three people were on the beach last night. Looks like they circled around the house to the west, near as
I can tell. Probably nothing, but who wouldn't announce themselves? " I ask.
"Everybody's hungry honey. Did you take the breadfruit and fish to the park yesterday?"
"Just the breadfruit, and a couple of coconuts and naseberrys. I want to stock our larders a little more, dry some more fish, and besides, Pryce
was down there with a big grouper."
"I don't trust him."
"I don't either, but he's a great fisherman, and he IS sharing."
"Emily S_ _ _ _ _ said she heard a plane yesterday. Do you think she really did?"
"Donno. I'm not positive it'd be a good thing if she did. How's that net coming along?" I ask, changing the subject. She pulls the
half-done net from when it had been hanging, holds it up. She's been pounding yucca leaves, scraping them, weaving a fishing net. She's been
working on it for three or four months.
As the wind shifts suddenly from the northeast, a downpour catches us and the cats chase us to the house, abandoning the screen house for dryer
quarters. Hard rain slants down, driven by perhaps 30 mph gusty winds. I go back out to grab the aluminum case; we've gotta watch the
barometer; tain't no internet anymore, and it's always in the back of our minds that the worst killer storm in history hit this place on the 8th of
November, back in '32.
We hear a pounding on the front door and she takes the machette from its hiding place under the counter.
"Who is it?" I say from next to the door. No answer.
"WHO IS IT?" I say louder.
I hear glass break from the back of our small house -- probably the bedroom. Those windows are boarded up with shutters from the inside, so must be
something glass thrown against the side of the house. Don't they realize how precious glass is??
Somehow the short spear appears in my hand. I honestly don't recall grabbing it. I move to the livingroom window, and peer out the small opening
in the shutters and see a still form outside, lying by our front door.
"Don't open it. I have a bad feeling about this...... it..... it's a trap..." she whispers. I respect her instincts. We've both come a
The bait has been set. The only question is, will we bite? What if someone is injured? I've done my share of doctoring since the power went
down last year, but I ain't much of a doctor. She takes the long spear with the 9" dual metal point and stands back from the door, crouching
slightly, nods. I know the wind coming off the sea will probably push the door open hard if I let it. I string two lengths of copper wire across
the doorway at knee and ankle height and tie them off on the eyehooks set in the doorframe. I take down the double boards quietly and turn the knob.
Silence, except the howling of the wind.
[edit on 23-9-2008 by argentus]
[edit on 23-9-2008 by argentus]
[edit on 23-9-2008 by argentus]