Tag Archives: outside

The Museum

Right out of school I wasn’t really ready for life yet. I needed to get out; get away – see the world, and if the money wasn’t enough for the world, then at least my own country.

I stumbled into him on the way South. A kind lady threw me out on a country road – and he was already there, lying in the dry grass with a cheap grin on his face.

“Been here for an hour,” he said. “Hard spot to catch a ride.”

We talked. Shared a cig he had stolen from his last ride. When there was still no car in sight – at least none that would stop – we walked side by side, our loose shoes sliding over the dirt in unison.

The heat was bad, but worse was the lack of prospects. No cars in sight and only an occasional house interspersed between the large fields. Max saw it first. The blue sky was still above our heads, but a front of gray was approaching from the horizon.

“Better find some roof,” he said.

We had passed the last house nearly twenty minutes ago. The next one, a large building with white walls, was not that far ahead. We pressed on, with larger steps, while the front of gray already swallowed the color of the land.

A large sign, nailed against the fence. The first word must have fallen off, but most letters of the second one remained:

“Muse m” Continue reading

They Keep Digging

Okay. This is going to sound crazy, but I promise I’m not crazy. It’s 4am now and I might be dead tired, but this is real and I’m not just imagining it.

Those diggers outside, they keep moving.

There’s two of them. It’s one of those annoying building sites where the workers start around 6:30am, just so they can wake normal people up, and they keep going until the early afternoon. They started shortly before Christmas and this must be an important thing because this hole is massive and they’ve been at it every day. But like those building sites are, not a single time did the workers stay until the evening and they certainly never worked during the night. And I’ve been looking out there for the last hours and there was definitely no worker out there.

But I have no doubt anymore that those diggers keep moving by themselves. Continue reading

On the Wire

I’m not the only one that remembers him.

Lisa too saw him, sitting there.

We were watching TV. I remember it was a Christmas special, two Indiana Jones movies and then something only for the adults. Lisa didn’t like Indy and the Nazis and when the screen turned black she laughed, at first.

Dad looked for a torch to go downstairs into the pitch-black basement. Mom found candles somewhere and put them up on the dinner table, but every time she turned around they went out again. Lisa and I just huddled on the couch and watched the snow outside.

Dad found the torch. He went downstairs, guided by that strangely round light of the torch. A flickering light.

“This thing is broken,” he said, while taking careful steps with every flicker.

When he was downstairs he called up for mom to bring a candle. Continue reading

Please Get Me Out Of Here

I’ve been in here all night and I can still hear them outside, sometimes driving by with trucks and sometimes speaking or shouting commands in a rough language that I can’t even identify.

The same 7:45 pm intercity train I take every day to get home. We were just twenty minutes out of the city and it was getting dark outside. But everything was going fine, we were even on schedule.

There was no warning. Nothing. A bright flash and a bang so loud that my ears are still ringing even now – and suddenly I was flying through the train.

I can’t get those sounds out of my head. The bang, the squeaking and crunching of metal. And the screams. It all happened so fast that I don’t even know whether I screamed too. Continue reading

Floor 5

“You’re single?” he asked.

“Yes,” I said. “But hopefully not for too long.”

“That’s good,” he said. “Not that I mind, you know. But women smell too much.”

“Oh, I always thought men are more dirty.”

“Well, he said. “It all depends on your sense of smell.”

The apartment was large and sunny, solid wooden floors, a lift and large windows that I would soon grow to hate. In every respect a bargain.

“The only thing,” he said. “Is that you can’t use the stairs. They were too dangerous and we had to block them. So you have to take the lift and in case of a fire there is an emergency ladder that goes right to your bedroom window.”

“Five floors on a ladder?”

“Well,” he said. “You look pretty strong. I’m sure you can handle that.” Continue reading

Caught in the Web

Noah J. kindly narrated this story. Listen, read, or both:


My parents gave me the car on the 8th of March. My birthday. I remember running my hand around the car. When I finally grabbed the door handle I felt the silky touch of a spiderweb on my fingers. That day I just threw it out.

The red color was partially peeling off, there was a crack in the back window and dents on all four sides. But it drove and on the inside the car looked well maintained. My parents had even asked a mechanic to check it out – he changed the oil and then sent them on their way. On the way to me.

Of course there was an agenda that came with the car. It was a sign that I was old enough, that I had to take care of something and organize my own life. It was an aid – a chance to find work outside our suburb.

That night I took Catriona for a ride. That night, sitting in the car with burgers and softdrinks stored between our legs, we had our first kiss.

She had to be home by 11. I dropped her off and brought the car home. It was freezing when I finally slammed the door shut and hushed inside. Continue reading