(The cover of McGurk whispers open, and again the pages begin silently to riffle.)
Think back to the day after graduation - the day when the comforting academic routine was ended and real life, with all its uncertainty, began. How did you feel? Did you wonder, with some trepidation, what lay ahead? Or were you eager to try your wings, to fly fearlessly off into the great unknown? Perhaps you had already planned a course for yourself and were prepared to set out upon it, secure in the knowledge that you had a handle on things, or maybe you waited for life to whisper in your ear and give you a sense of direction.
However you may have felt on that day, however your journey may have begun, I feel certain that, whether you have paused at a metaphorical rest station, or whether your journey continues uninterrupted, you have encountered twists and turns, and obstacles in the road, that have caused you to detour and perhaps occasionally come to a stop. It is even possible that you may have been compelled to alter your presumed destination.
Existence, it sometimes seems, is the Creator's casino (to change metaphors), with a myriad games of chance beckoning you to sit at the table, to lay your money down. The rules of the game, however, are subject to change without notice, and how, and how quickly, you adapt, determine whether you hit the jackpot or empty your pockets.
The point, I guess, if there is one, is that we just never know. When we first spread our wings, when we take our first flight, we cannot know whether we have been trained well enough to survive on our own in a largely uncaring world. Parents and educators can only teach so much, and are themselves often imperfect, and life is often the true classroom. The tests we face there are more rigorous and demanding, and as for the final exam . . . .
(All photos, as ever, are brought to you courtesy of the wonderful folks at Eastman Kodak Co.)
The two shots above depict Fulmine, near the box, and Ihteram on the walkway. They apparently tumbled from the box during a feeding session a little after noon yesterday. They are both okay and being fed; Fulmine can flutter from one side of the box to the other, and Ihteram, at least for now, scurries around on the walkway. The photo showing all 5 was taken not long before the incident, and will be the last portraying the whole family.
Now the waiting and worrying begins.