In the hazy and blue before sunrise, the river tumbles down to the ocean, waves of clear water drown out the sounds of the leaves touching each other softly and the birds whispering about seeds and bugs. On the far side of the river the sun rises pink and bright over a field of open sunflowers. I decide to look for a place to cross.
The sky is still pink when a small clearing opens up with all the tools and supplies needed to build a bridge to the other side.
I find salt and pepper coloured stones round like crystal balls. Each one comes with a memory. This one says I bought myself a piano after university. This one says I eat only what I like. This one says I see the good in people and try my best to encourage them no matter who they are, or what they’ve done. This one reminds me of many jobs I failed at, trying to find the right place for me.
There is a man with a wood burner sitting over the wooden planks. He is burning pictures of people into the side. There is a picture of me and you talking for hours, telling each other what we learned in today’s adventure. On this one we are on the waterfront putting a play together to perform beside the dock. There are the nights at the hotel, when we were allowed to stay as guests in the rooms that worked in that day. There are rows of people who taught me and supported me and passed me without me knowing.
As I wonder how I‘m supposed to build this bridge, people start to come out of the trees, and sunflowers, working on both sides of the river. Throughout the day there are sandwiches (some gluten free), lemonade and snacks. When the sun sets over the horizon I walk across the bridge.
In the middle I notice the planks have no pictures and the rocks don’t tell stories. These memories haven’t been made yet. The emptiness is frightening.
Some people cross with me, some stay behind and say we’ll see each other real soon, while others just turn around and walk into the forest.
I look back, but now all that is left is the river laughing in the distance.