Fifteen dead flies floated mid the Grenadine Syrup- in a bottle across the deli counter from me.”I counted them, he spoke with grave face, slurping his coffee, my friend the vagabond Godfrey.
“My what a nasty thing to see, Worzel do not look, he muttered bending to write in his notebook. He wrote- Out on the road there is a soft pause in the day. When all is well and you know where you will stay for the rainy night or longer. You go with the flow you are bolder and smarter each day of joy on your bike, or setting down heavy pack after a good hike.
Boots and socks peeled off hot, tired feet. Oh how I remember the damp grass or cool sand. Jump in the lake cold and sweet, wade in the tidal lagoon. Brave the nebulous shower if there is one..pad bare foot downstairs to the hostel common room.
Soft pause and hot feet..I knew that he knew that I thought that we ought tell the deli counter clerk what floated in the Grenadine. No, it’s not made from beets said I, it’s for mixed drinks or to drizzle over ice-cream.
He was writing intensely, shaggy head down, no appetite for treats as he always did when with me in town. Oh Worzel, Godfrey spoke, well you know I am allergic to stings and insect bites, I must mind where I go. On a lovely island remote from the city, I stepped bare-foot in the soft grass on something that stung me.
It was a fine camping spot, although a bit damp, my shelter a hut of driftwood logs from the sea. My foot swelled up, there was naught I could do, when down on the shore found words carved deeply on a piece of debris.
..It was a message I have long since carried with me. It is hidden in the wisdoms, when you find it you will know why..It helped me face the fear that that lonely stretch of shore is where I may well die.
When you sleep beside the ocean, there is a soft pause, that gentle susurrus which whispers to the tide, “Time to go, time to retreat” It is a voice that also the vagabond can hear. Time to move along, on strong, cool feet, they will carry you through beauty as surely as the sun will always rise.
It brought tears to my eyes, wrote Godfrey. The only one I have ever met could get inspired by a bottle of red syrup full of flies. I hoped the deli clerk would pour the bottle down the drain, instead she used a grimy rag and turned her back to strain the flies out, and return the syrup to the shelf.
I excused my self and ushered Godfrey out the door… We did not have coffee there anymore…