and they are off!
it was a festive group of 76
(yes, we lost one more between the bus ride and the start)
that gathered at the base of the giant peach.
photos were snapped
small talk indulged.
lots of nervous laughter
bushes were watered
and only a few using a last opportunity to take a load off their feet.
but no one really knows what to do with this last 15 minutes.
nothing hurts yet.
no feet to tend
the water bottles and belly are full.
in 15 minutes the cigarette will light
and the minutes will become precious.
their old world will start to fade
and the new life
the life on the open road
will take over.
as each hour passes life grows simpler.
those things that we take for granted
in this normal world
will come to fill all of the dark recesses of the mind.
because, after they touched the peach and walked out the gate
those things were no longer guaranteed.
those things have to be found.
they have to be earned.
and moving down that white line.
that is life now.
moving one step at a time.
every minute distance requiring an effort.
and so many steps lie in front of them
that it is beyond the scope of the mind to imagine them.
the rock is a dream
or maybe it is
a figment of the imagination.
there are mountains to cross
turns to find
sights to see
problems to solve
adventures to live.
hopelessness to overcome
laughter and joy
when the sheer wonder of living
fills every fiber
when the unexpected gift of bottle of cold water
brings tears to the eye.
there are many uncertainties
between the peach and the rock.
the adventures have barely begun.
do not pity those lonely figures beside the road.
nursing half bottles of hot water
and hoping to find even filling station food.
for these next few days they will experience life
in a way most of us never experience it.
the way it can never be experienced
when basic needs are a given.
and comfort and ease are the norm.
only when you have the least
can you truly live life to its fullest.
and over the next 10 days
these “poor bastards” have a lot of life to live.