Anakana Schofield – Award Winning Author of Bina, Martin John and Malarky

Predictions of man pushing a bicycle

Trundling up the hill with a couple of loaves at the ready last week, as I was conveniently mustering up curmugeonly thoughts about the nuisance of Christmas, I caught sight of a man I didn’t use to live far from and he greets me with a hearty Merry Christmas. I fall into step with him and his bicycle, which he’s pushing with some gusto. I ask after damage to the trees near him following the recent storm and following a detailed report on the tumble of several large branches he swiftly deviates into mumblings along the lines of man being a whirlwind and being headed for calamity. I offer a few global warming hints, but he’s not talking about global warming he’s on some other plain. “Some people,” he says, ” have had certain experiences and these experiences have prevented them from doing things.” He’s getting pretty cryptic at this point, and much as I am tempted to inquire after the variety of these experiences (would it be borstal or moving statues or messages from the beyond, or eating toast?). Mostly I want to inquire to see if perhaps I might have had one, but I resist because if I stop him in his flow we might get into some moral disagreement and then he won’t answer what I really want to know. So on he continues and it’s riveting, but just as the conspiracy of world tumult is getting going he keeps interrupting it to tell me he believes in reincarnation. Again tempted as I am to refer him to neuro Henry and the surgeons view we will not be returning as frogs I keep my replies limited to appropriate “rights, and is that right, yes indeed.”

He’s very keen to express that even though he knows it’s all coming to a head and the world’s essentially on a collision course to an abrupt end that he’s relaxed about it because he’s known about it for a while and besides he believes in reincarnation and so this is what has to happen.

Finally I can no longer contain myself so I ask quietly: would you have clue about a date when you think this might all be due to happen?

And very clearly and confidently he answers “yes around 2012.” I must say that I admire a conspiracy theory where  the practical things like dates and times have been nailed.

It’s time to turn left because he’s back to the cryptic crossword talk again. We bid our goodbyes and as he loops into the traffic he raises his arm in the air and encourages me repeatedly to have “fortitude.”

It rather made my day to know there are folks milling around who pay so much attention to detail. There was something almost architectural about the precision and exactness with which he envisaged the future. Obviously he was a little more woolly on the past.

Fortitude indeed.

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