‘The biggest downside of time travel,’ he told the small mammal, ‘is the utter hopelessness if you get stuck sometime. Because you know that if anyone ever makes sense of your notes and decides to save you, they could have saved you within a week of your getting stuck. When I say a week, I mean of course from your own perspective. The perspective of the person who is stuck.’ He scratched his beard. ‘It’s been 23 days.’

A heavy thumping approached and the mammal squeaked and ran down a hole.

‘Of course it could be that they want to teach me a lesson and will not rescue me until day 24. Also, being eaten would probably be painful.’ With a sigh, he ran to live another day.


42 Standing still

The world is moving through time and space. The raindrops are falling through the air. They shatter into numerous little pearls when they hit the smooth curving surface of the roof, some roll down the roof, others begin the fall anew and shatter when they reach the roof, and then the new smaller pearls fall.

I stand underneath the glass dome and watch as the raindrops fall and shatter, fall and shatter, fall and shatter.

I experience time or I would not be able to see them fall, but inside my dome time has stopped. Just to make sure, I dropped my watch over the side of the platform. It slowed and stopped halfway down. It has been hanging in midair for two days now.

However, since my perception of time has not left me, I suspect that time still passes for my body. Then again, I have not eaten since the morning before I threw down my watch, and I have not moved since I looked up at the sky right after throwing my watch, and then the rain began falling and shattering against the dome and the rain is still falling and shattering, falling and shattering, falling and shattering, falling…

Scrapbook vs Diary

There are memories in my scrapbook. Of places and people I once knew. There are pictures of a dog I once had, and exotic fish from a tropical island which I visited with someone special.

They are all right there on the pages as if they had never changed at all. Time is frozen in my scrapbook.

There are thoughts in my scrapbook. Some of the most beautiful thoughts I ever had are there. Thoughts I shared with strangers, thoughts my best friends shared with me, and thoughts I only ever shared with one particular person.

I will probably never think anything to compare with those thoughts again, but they are all there in my scrapbook.

After the last page in my scrapbook there are about two unrecorded months and then there is my diary.

My diary is my life after the scrapbook. In my diary, time crawls at a snail’s pace.

It has entries like:

What will I need to sleep?

–          A large t-shirt. Very big and so worn and soft that the fabric might rip at any time.

–          Boxer shorts, about half a size too big.

–          Sleepytime-socks. Thick, warm, fuzzy.

–          Eiderdown big enough for two.

–          King-size bed, so that I can toss and turn without falling out. Or at least without falling out of bed before half the night is through.

Do I have these things? Yes. Goodnight.

And details like which hand soap I use and where I shop (it is always the same store), and how often (only when I absolutely have to) and long ramblings about my scrapbook and how my diary is compared to it.

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