Where is that stupid hole? I really can’t stand these moving sands in the desert. They make it so difficult to backtrack my steps.
Ah, here it is.
Huh!? What the hell?!
Who put all these rocks back into my pit? Definitely not the work of the winds. Been gone for 5 days, but surely no one else would come all the way out here.
That’s it, I’m staying here this time around until the job is done.
I picked up the shovel and resumed the arduous task of getting back to the metallic object in the ground. The winds had picked up and the sand was flying right into my eyes and mouth. I pulled my shirt over my head and blindly returned to the shoveling.
Oh wow, this shirt smells nice. I wonder what kind of fabric softener was used. Does that stuff really soften the fabric or just give it a nice smell? That guy in the pharmacy had some really nice smelling Oud. Best Oud shop is in Mecca right across from the Haram. I can’t understand what people see in Obama.
I finally reached the buried, metallic object. I threw the shovel to the side and picked up the pick. With a deep breath, I drove the pick into the object. With a tiny spark, I saw a thick flake of the metal chip off the top. As soon as I picked up the chunk, with its reeking smell, this strong wistful feeling overcame me.
Thoughts that had long exited my memory banks came flooding back. I was instantly transported to a nostalgic dimension. But the thoughts that overcame me were extremely ugly and extremely painful.
I quickly threw the piece to the side.
What was that all about?! Am I going crazy out here in this isolation?
I paced around inside the hole, holding my head in my hands, wondering what I was doing. I brushed aside my apprehensions and without thinking, turned to pick up the piece again. This time I didn’t let go, letting the stream of memories flow unabated.
Promises, broken without remorse. Insults, hurled without consideration. Condescension, treachery, arrogance, insincerity. So much pain - inflicted upon others, upon myself.
They kept pouring into my conscience, one ugly memory after another.
Aaagghh! All these hideous thoughts!
I flung the metal piece onto the pile of dirt and immediately fell to my knees, more out of emotional exhaustion than physical, struggling to catch my breath.
What the hell was *THAT*? Where did all those memories come from?
After a momentary pause to recollect my thoughts, my urge to dig mysteriously returned, overcoming my urge to flee. I grabbed the pick and struck the object again and another piece came off. I continued chipping away the top metallic layer of rust, until I heard a hissing sound coming from a small hole I had managed to pierce.
Oh crap, this is some sort of gas pipe and I just busted a hole into it. But the hissing sound stopped and it was replaced by voices.
Voices? Naah, that can’t be voices. Must be imagining things again.
But it was a voice. And not just any voice, but MY voice!
Freaked out, I leapt out of the pit and jumped behind the pile of dirt. I sat still, slowly peeking at the pit, trying to control my heavy breathing.
I’ve officially gone off the deep end. I’m reliving memories and hearing voices all while digging a pit. What the hell am I thinking?
I turned around, leaned my back against the mound, legs sprawled, and stared out to the open desert, struggling to make sense of what just happened. The cool breeze of the crisp evening helped to alleviate my worries.
As I sat there, the weight of my eyelids overcame me.
Part 1 - The Beginning
Part 2 - The Discovery
Part 3 - Memories
Part 4 - The Opening
Part 5 - The Caretaker
Monday, April 20, 2009