The hidden years in Canada 107, the awakening

Door San-Daniel gepubliceerd op Saturday 01 August 19:05


The awakening

It drizzled softly and I was cold, very cold. My head banged with every breath I took and I felt sick. Slowly the realization came back and I shivered but not from the cold. I was lying against a riverbank The fog had lifted and it became light. My leg ached and hurt when I tried to stand on it. I sat down and tried to clear my head but could not. Drowsiness prevailed and I began to feel queasy I wanted to look at my watch but it had been lying next to me at bedtime, just like the machete. It drizzled and  I shivered again, but that is not what made me shiver. I was still alive , which surprised me, but my mind was covered by a cloud which capped everything. I sensed muscle aches and my back hurt. There was something important today? It was the day that the friends would come, they would come to the camp if they were not already there. I struggled to concentrate. Slowly I got up but decided to just lie down a little longer and I fell back into oblivion.

When I opened my eyes I immediately had to tackle a fierce twinge of pain, the sun was now high in the sky and the light striking my eyes hurt and my head nearly exploded. I got up and my one leg made me stumble, it glowed and hurt. I placed my right hand over my eyes to shield them and as a great Indian chief, I glanced around me. I now became dizzy and was unsteady on my feet. I saw the mountains, and I realized that it was that side of the riverwhere I had to go. I decided to call Bev's name out loud. In the valley such sound would carry far and if she was already there, then she could come looking for me with Don and Richard. I formed a funnel with my hands and yelled ‘Bev !! ' It made me shrink away, my head seemed to regret any effort. First I waded through the river and I had to find the good side. In the middle of the river, I stopped, would I have to go to the left or right when I got to the other side? This piece of river was unknown to me, I decided I would have to go upstream and then stop after a few hundred meters and see if it all looked more familiar. I felt in my pocket for the compass of Don.

I concentrated very hard on the compass. Occasionally I saw it hazy and then clearly again. It was in one of these clear moments that I noticed that the general direction would indeed be left and I began to adapt my hobble wobble .. I waded now crossing diagonally through the water. I bent down a little which immediately made my head protest, and splashed some water on my head. It cooled my hot forehead down enormously. Then I cupped my hand and took a sip of water and immediately I heard Bev's voice in my head and I looked through the haze which was on my mind, unable to shake it off. The river God, it dawned on me and despite the pain in my head I grinned, it was only a legend, right? I remembered what had happened, I had been hunted, which had not been nonsense and something had beaten me down with great force. Chucklewigs, came on in my head. I was back in the land of the living, the blanket that had covered my thinking was removed. However, I would have to get to the base camp, because that is where the Pontiac would be, or was still to come.

I knew I was not well and began to hobble on . I had in the night or early morning run away from the horrors that had tried to surround me and I had no idea how much distance I had traveled. Fear gives wings and certainly if you're fleeing mortal danger.


The next corner brought salvation, when I staggered around, I recognized that part of the river, fortunately I had made the right choice. Still it took, hampered by my leg and not hounded by terrible fear, a long time. I saw the Pontiac standing there before I heard voices and I could not get a good focus on the figures standing there, I only saw them waving at me. I could not go any further and sat down. Moments later, Bev stood beside me. ‘Bloody hell,’ she said, ‘what happened to you?’ ‘I fell I answered.’ ‘You have a huge bump and a gash on your forehead,’ she said.'Ssst, ‘I said and put a finger to my lips. ‘I have a headache.’. Don and Richard took me between them and as a survivor that you always see in pictures of the Civil War, I was with dragged along between two comrades to the base camp. ‘My leg hurts,’ I added.'Let  me see that, ‘said Bev and obediently  we all came to a halt. She rolled my trouser leg up, ‘that looks inflamed,’ she thought, how did that happen? ‘

Leeches, I said, and suddenly I felt all the tension disappear I was with my friends, what could happen to me? ‘They really exist, 'I continued,' the chucklewigs!’ ‘Never mind,’ said Bev, ‘you first have to go to a pharmacy or doctor and then we’ll hear it all.’ The blankets were all over the place but were not torn up. The mist had shown me things that did not happen. ‘Bev,’ I said, 'I drank from  the water, I'm sorry. ‘ Don’t speak' ‘she said,’ we're going to Deadhorse and then straight to Jones's snack bar, who’ll know where the doctor lives. ‘

‘You are in no condition to drive, ‘Richard,’ hop in the car and start this heap ,you know where we're going?’ ‘Yes ma'am,’ Richard laughed and tipped an imaginary cap, 'Your James is already on his way. ‘.

San Daniel 2015

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