Friday, February 5, 2010

Letter from the frontier: more than bears

Dear World,

There was an attack of the Grouchies this week, I'm afraid. Have I ever told you about Grouchies? I haven't? How remiss of me.

Well, they're small and shaped rather like faster, meaner grizzly bears - but they hunt in packs like killer whales, or wolves.

They've got thick dark brown fur but aside from that, they're really nothing like bears. Bears are sometimes cute but Grouchies - even with the fur - are never ever cute. They're vicious and devilishly clever too; they've learned to wait till a creature is obviously tired, drooping or ill, then they bunch up and pounce all at once, in a flurry of moving dark fur, flashing fangs and claws.

So on Tuesday, as I rounded the corner of my office building - carrying my take away coffee(a dead giveaway if there ever was one!) and slouching (next time, shoulders up and pulled back!) - they sprang an attack. I'd been forewarned about those vicious buggers so I had some defenses up, but still - the suddenness and ferocity of the attack took my breath away. Mind you, this was a small pack - I've heard of much larger ones so perhaps I was just lucky this time.

I shall spare you the details of course! Much too gory for public consumption and anyway, a true gentleman(or woman) never shows off. So to cut to the chase, the battle was won - although not without suffering a bruise or three, and when the sun set on Friday (yes, it was an epic four day battle), I emerged, licking my wounds and limped my way home, tail tucked between my weary legs.

We're friends though so let me tell you - there were some really sticky moments. On Thursday morning, I really wasn't sure if I'd make it. Fortunately, I had an English companion this week - none other than the inimitable Mr C S Lewis. Oh, I could just gush on about that man. It made such a world of difference - to have him in the fight beside me. For some reason, the English have that effect ; it must be all that stiff upper lip keeping they do. Don't mock the insistence on elevenses and tea drinking! They do help keep the spirits up and one feels fortified and willing to charge right on. That's why even though we were outnumbered, by dint of gritting our teeth and plugging ahead - victory was ours at the last.

So here we are. On the shores of Friday Evening, quite exhausted and willing to pitch tent, have some cocoa and tumble into bed. Oh, there'll be other battles tomorrow and next week. But tomorrow and next week can worry about themselves for now. Only,do excuse my grammar and spelling this week, I'm so tired I can hardly see straight.

Good night World, write me sometime - one gets rather lonesome out here, with only the stars for company. Mr Lewis is frightfully comforting of course, but you know what those luminaries are like. They'll show up when you need them - thank God for that - but otherwise, in the between and betwixt, you're on your own.

Besides, its always so inexpressibly nice, getting letters in the mail or postcards from the edge.

Much Love,


(Postscript: must bring my cute refillable mug for takeaways next time. Save the earth and all that but also all the better to trick 'em with; nothing says bright and chipper more than a flowery mug)

1 comment:

Zhi Ming said...

Have you gone back to coffee? Oh dear