Day Nine Hundred Twenty #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

Our meeting concluded, Raj P took over the consolation of his brother and folded him into his group.

With the new day we set about implementing our decisions.

We assigned to Jezer the task of running down what has happened to Raj G’s people. And Quasimo stepped up to help him in that quest. (I believe Jezer has opened up to be more amenable to taking someone with him).

Sensing the hour and the day at hand, Elijah and I took Tomas and the Captain aside to enlist their aid in finding the other parties that long ago (and far away) set out for their calling in Jerusalem. Their present whereabouts is a complete mystery to all but the Spirit.

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Day Eight Hundred Ninety Seven #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

It was a quick one day trip, a concession to the people left behind in the hiding place. With Jezer gone down to the desert and Meesa just recently returned, they are ill at ease when their leaders are constantly coming and going.

I believe that Elijah is finally coming to grips with his need to pour himself into their instruction.

Yet how much is needed?

Maturity can be such a mystery.

Thankfully our foray proved a blessing and most necessary, for we located Jezer in the desert with the band he was endeavoring to bring in. The minute Quasimo saw us, he ran to greet us. He was relieved to know that Jezer was indeed telling him the truth.

Day Eight Hundred Three #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

I thought I was seeing things. For no apparent reason water was pooling in the once dry riverbed. It spread from the direction of the megapolis, instead of down from the mountains at our back.

Soon it was filled from bank to bank, and not long after we discovered the explanation to my mystery.

Several tanker trucks were queued up and one by one were discharging their contents forming the river.

No one detained us as we skirted the area, but many stared with suspicion.

One of the drivers got out and followed – until he was ordered back to his vehicle.

Further on I puzzled over some machinery, submerged near the water’s edge.

Elijah looked and said, “It’s for irrigation.”

Day Seven Hundred Seventeen #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

The five of us talked through the night. Our joy grew as the Spirit’s loving superintendence of our lives was revealed in the recounting of our journeys to this point in time.

G has brought his charges safely through beehives of global authority soldiers all intent on their capture. In fact, their presence in this remote place is the most recent example of their hairbreadth escapes.

G was greatly encouraged by our accounts – the only exception being the mystery surrounding the fate of his twin brother P, who, last we knew, was in the hands of the authorities at the gateway to the east.

Each of us, however holds out hope, knowing that what has sustained us also sustains him.

Day Four Hundred Eighty Two #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

The light of the sun now shines into the depths of the ship’s hold. All to reveal a hollow space in the midst of the other containers. Was there ever a container there at all?

Tomas surmises that someone or “someones” on the crew arranged it in order to have a private spot for illicit activity. I’m not so sure. There are no signs that the space was ever occupied. And if ever there was a container to go with the paper work it must have been removed long ago. All that remains is the mystery.

I left Tomas to supervise the reloading and sought Elijah.

I found him only to learn we will not be allowed to stay ashore.

Day Four Hundred Fifty Three #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

A tug chugged out early to the roads where we three vessels were waiting for entry. We were surprised to see that each vessel received two men from the tug. The mystery was cleared up come time to receive our own charges. One was a pilot, the other was a political officer representing the world government.

The latter made it very clear that we could not enter and conduct any business unless negotiated by someone bearing the mark.

The Captain countered that we were not desirous of entering for any purposes of commerce, but rather only delivering a shipment to the city’s governor from his sister city on the island.

This stymied the duo. They returned to port for instructions.

Day Four Hundred #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

Elijah and I have come to the same conclusion. Stan is here to extend and widen the reach of the world government.

But we disagree on what to do next. I believe his appearance was the answer to our “when to leave” question. Now.

Elijah clings to the notion that we still have a responsibility. What that is exactly, remains a mystery.

In my considered opinion, all followers of Hamashiach are safely out of his reach.

A case in point, the former owners of this inn were believers that left. The current possessors, we have learned, simply took over.

All the remaining denizens in this town are ripe to receive the “mark” for his promises.

What is left to do?

Day Two Hundred Fifty Five #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

When last in this vicinity we were hounded by drones. Nothing flies above our heads now, not even birds.

Our host explained everything to Elijah. He is related to the woman who had helped us. She disappeared a few days before the deluge from the skies took down everything electronic.

Elijah in his turn explained the mystery behind the woman’s disappearance. It was a great comfort for our host. The time was indeed ripe for him to believe.

When we told him our intent to continue moving onwards into the city, he balked and practically begged us not to. He does all within his power to avoid drawing attention to himself and his people.

We decided to acquiesce for now.

Day Two Hundred Twelve Late Morning #DiaryoftheEndoftheWorld

Enough writes:

Why I cannot see the other oasis now is a mystery to me. I probably should not be too concerned for it is not my destination, but I cannot escape the feeling that I am somehow connected to it.

I halted at one point in my transit and thought of Lyle.

The Stuff Dreams Are Made Of

The Stuff Dreams Are Made Of

Having been awed by Bogart in Casablanca I was eager to see him in other films. So when The Maltese Falcon popped up on the schedule for the Harvard Exit, my girl friend and I made a date to see it. Ahead of time, I didn’t know what to expect, not having read any Dashiel Hammett stories or novels. In fact, I had not heard of Film Noir or even the phrase “hard-boiled.” (I did take a class on film at Seattle U, but it was more of film appreciation type class. It would touch a bit on the how tos so that you knew what you were looking at. Really it was a film critique class. And it talked about genres – westerns, sci-fi, comedy, etc.Film Noir included – but this must have been later).

Come time for the show, we were settled in our seats, the lights went down, and the Warner Bros. Logo and a fanfare announced the film. And the music score (Adolph Deutsch) ushered us into the mystery heralded in glorious black and white (and charcoal and pearly grays).

So we were thrown into the mystery of the Black Bird, all wrapped up in the events surrounding the murder of Sam Spade’s partner Miles Archer. We were confused along with our hero as odd characters, one by one came on the scene, all trying to enlist the detective’s help and thwart the others in the quest for the fabled bird. Would Sam figure out what was going on? Would we? Would his feelings for Brigid O’Shaughnessy find fulfillment? We cared. And we were surprised.

Some years afterwards I read one of the bios about the director of the film, John Huston. Huston himself wrote the screenplay. He said that he simply took the story that Hammett had written and translated it page for page to the screen. And in my reading and viewing of the two I can concur. It is unusual for a film taken from another source to end up reflecting it in all its little perfections. The norm for this situation eventuates in two artistic expressions with the same title, but with little similarity thereafter. As the expression goes, Huston nailed it.

The Maltese Falcon would join Casablanca and Lawrence of Arabia as seeds sewn in my psyche. Or in another analogy – they were germs that gave me Hollywood Fever.