Long Live The Storytellers
Amazing Scientific Facts • Strangeness • Stranded On A Deserted Island - Part 3
One Minute Wit
Amazing Scientific Facts
You Might Not Know
You can stand on either side of the Earth and not fall off.
from The Starlin Book Of Amazing Scientific Facts You Might Not Know
Two Old Guys On A Park Bench
Wisdom comes with age.
Long Live The Storytellers
Before the rise in literacy and the invention of the printing press, people told stories. To family, to friends, around the table, around a campfire, at the pub. If you were good at it, not many people knew. Did it matter? Of course not. If you liked telling stories, you told them. If other people liked listening to them, they listened.
Over time storytellers became writers. Stories started living in books.
As a writer, I am known by a few hundred people. Does it matter? Of course not. The world doesn’t owe me a huge audience or fame and fortune. And thankfully, I am not chasing after them. God bless those who are. It is a difficult road to travel.
Of course, we all want an audience. Someone to appreciate our creative output. Audiences are good. No matter the size. They help us grow. The feedback they provide is essential. You learn what works and what doesn’t. You receive criticism, encouragement, and instructive silence. All of which are helpful.
And if you write something readers like, it is very satisfying.
I write mainly humor and fiction. If people like to read what I write, they read it. And sometimes they respond. It’s like telling stories to friends.
I am fortunate that I can write for the pure joy of creativity and the pleasure of a small audience that enjoys what I write. Not because I am rich. By no means. I appreciate the small amount of money I earn writing, but writing is just one of my gigs. My main income comes from teaching guitar. My wife also works. Together we make enough to live simply. It is good. And it allows me to write. To tell stories.
I am a storyteller.
Long live the storytellers.
A Serial Story Of Adventure And Surprises
Stranded On A Deserted Island • Part 3
When we left off last time, our hero helplessly watched as his rescue airplane crashed. The pilot survived and turned out to be Amelia Earhart. In this chapter, she tells her story.
The sky was deep blue, the water turquoise. Waves splashed gently on the beach as a cool breeze blew in off the water. Had it been under different circumstances, this island would have been considered a paradise. Under the present circumstances, it was more like a prison. As we sat on our sandy cell, Amelia began telling the story of their flight.
“We were nearly out of fuel and desperately trying to find Howland Island when a powerful storm came out of nowhere. We got blown far off course and had no idea where we were. Then suddenly, the storm vanished, and it was blue skies. A few minutes later, we saw this island. As we got close, we saw you waving. We circled, looking for a place to land. But there wasn’t anywhere suitable, so we decided to look for another island nearby. As we flew, it became obvious that there were no more islands nearby. We knew we would have to ditch the Electra. So we headed back. We got as close as we could and set her down in the water. You know the rest.”
“And you believe this storm was a time storm?” I asked.
“If what you have shown me and told me is real, then I see no other explanation.”
“It is all real. As real as you are. Unless we are both dreaming or delusional.”
“I wish it was a dream. But I fear it is not.” Amelia said.
I had no reply. My mind was still spinning. Trying to understand this new reality.
Amelia interrupted my thoughts.
“You haven’t told me your story. How did you manage to get on the island? We saw no boat when we circled.”
“My boat was damaged in a storm. I had to abandon it. I arrived here only this morning. I did find fresh water. And I climbed a hill to take a look at the island. Although I’m sure you got a better look at it from the air than I did.”
“Yes. There is nothing remarkable about it. I am glad to hear you found fresh water.”
“I also found a couple of fire pits shortly before I heard your plane. That is the extent of my knowledge of the island.”
“Then I recommend we do some exploring. We may be here for some time.
We began walking along the beach. I carried our meager supplies in my backpack.
“You said the year is 2018. Tell me about the world now. Is air travel popular?”
“Oh yes. Commercial air travel is common. There are huge aircraft with two levels of passenger seating. Airplanes have jet engines now instead of propellers.”
“Like the turbo-jet engines the English and Germans are working on?”
“Yes, but vastly improved, I imagine. You can fly almost anywhere in the world today if you have a passport.”
“Across the Pacific ocean?”
“Without stopping. One flight.”
“Amazing. Tell me about something else.”
“There is so much. Umm, shortly after you vanished, the Germans, Italians, and Japanese started a war that engulfed almost the entire world. Over 50 million people died. But they were eventually defeated in 1945.”
Amelia’s eyes got funny. I couldn’t tell if she was unsure whether to believe me or overwhelmed by the thought of it. I continued.
“In the 1960s, man landed on the Moon.”
“The Russians put the first man in space and orbited the earth in 1961. The Americans answered by putting a man on the moon in 1969.”
“In rocket ships.”
“Like Flash Gordon?”
“You’re not making this up?”
“Nope. It’s all true.”
“Do people live on the Moon?”
“No, there is no air. It’s basically a dead rock. We quit going in the 1970s.”
“What about other planets? Have we gone to Mars?”
“Only unmanned ships and rovers. They are like small cars.”
“That is mind-boggling. What else?”
“Television. A screen, or box, that shows, mmm, shows, like movies or plays. Except they are broadcast over the air without wires. Although cables are still used. You can watch them at home. And everything is in color.”
“Computers became popular in the 1970s. Machines that perform calculations far faster than humans. At first, they filled the rooms. And now people carry them around in their pockets. You can see other people on them. You can read books on them. You can find out anything—sort of like a super encyclopedia. You can take photographs. You can play music. They are also telephones.”
“Now I know you are making things up.”
“It’s true. Here, I will show you mine.”
I took my iPhone out of the backpack, started it up, and handed it to her. She just stared at it, amazed.
Then she said, “Why don’t you call for help.”
There is no signal. And the battery is nearly dead. You need a satellite phone out here to call anyone, and mine got ruined in the storm.”
“What is a satellite phone?”
“It bounces your voice off of machines that continually circle the Earth up in space.”
“Alright. Enough future talk. My brain can’t handle any more at the moment.”
We decided it would be wise to go get some water and find a place to camp. We would need to set up camp near water since we currently had no means of carrying water other than the ziplock bags that held the beef jerky. On the way to the pond, we found a couple of Papaya plants. Which was good, as we were both getting quite hungry, and I only had so much jerky.
We found a reasonably clear spot near the pond and gathered sticks for a fire. As darkness closed in, we sat by the fire eating papaya and jerky, listening to the music of a phenomenon who appeared a year after Amelia’s disappearance—Frank Sinatra. Amelia loved the sound of the orchestra and the singing.
At the end of the song Come Fly With Me, Amelia said, “How glorious. A song about flying. This music is wonderful. And the singer is quite unusual. Very intimate.”
“Well, he’s no David Cassidy,” I replied, momentarily forgetting that she wouldn’t get the joke.
The next morning, we continued our circuit of the island. As we rounded a bend in the shoreline, we both gasped. One hundred yards down the beach, resting against the shore, was my boat!
To be continued next Monday.
Happy Monday. Thanks for reading and responding. You make it fun.
Ah, old age... always learning no matter what!
Love the serial, and am glad you're keeping us engaged. Part 4 to come!
For some reason, while reading it, I find myself thinking: "Willllsonnnn!!!" 😂
Still enjoying the journey on the island with Amelia. Looking forward to part 4.