“THE FORGOTTEN TALE” – “Tuesday Afternoon”

“Palace of the Governors” – Etienne

Slivers of light pierced the greyhound’s darkened cocoon as the last expellation of air pushed the doors open to the outside.  In the background I could hear my ghost friend engaged in conversation with another spirit off the isle to my left.

They argued in different languages over what to call where we were.   “Agah Po’oge, Yooto”, as well as several other options were being considered.  Both somewhat liked “La Villa Real de la Santa Fe de San Francisco de Assisi”, but agreed it took entirely too long to pronounce.

Each spirit grabbed my arms to assist me in standing and lifting my backpack. I accepted their help in escorting me towards the steps into the light.  My hands were bruised from carrying the extra weight.  Even for my age, they looked foreign to me…these hands certainly could not be mine.

I was happy earlier for the darkness in the greyhound creating an absence of my reflection off of the glass, allowing no confirmation of how lost and disoriented I really was.  Immensely tired and alone, except for my now two ghosts guides, I momentarily questioned the importance of finding the tale at all and seriously considered going back to my seat and surrendering to this life’s ordeal.

Once the three steps to the mid day sun were cautiously navigated, my acquaintances begin tugging on each arm beckoning  me to go with them in different directions.  Stubbornly, I trekked north towards the village center, content that I was accommodating no one, except my Grandfather.

Giovani, the newest spirit, slowed as we passed the Cathedral Bassicilica and insisted we all stop at the San Miguel.  My ghost on the right was angered that our path missed the plaque commemorating Dr. Baumann and the burial site of the giant heart he cared for.  So on it went, as on we went.

We passed numerous trinkets and opportunities to eat, the abundant colored crafts and warm smell of corn tortillas didn’t curtail our pursuit along the path towards the Palace of the Governors.  About to collapse, the spirits helped me push on until together we all converged on the blanketed isle described in the letter of my Grandfather.

Now with second wind, my eyes sharpened as we reviewed the various blankets displaying the wares and crafts of the local artists. I examined each blanket in detail for the entire length of the block, looking for a match in color and pattern, without success.  I asked anyone that would listen, if they had ever seen a blanket similar to mine before or a carving that resembled my Grandfather’s half finished piece……..I may as well have been invisible.

Ready to give into the heat of the sun high above the Sangre de Cristo, the spirits now assisted in unison leading me to a seat shaded by a simple awning next to a small bubbling fountain.

My eyes closed, I yearned for sleep’s end. I had done the best I could do, it was all I had, this Tuesday afternoon…..I was ready, at last, to let go and flail into the mystic.

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