Thursday, June 8, 2017

A Good Day, by Robin Miguel Reisinger

A Good Day
A short story of a forgotten man, who wanted nothing but help.
By SounD the Silent

             "The sun is shining and the grass is green, so quit your whining and being mean" shoots through my head whilst waking up to the loud fight of my neighbors, who are arguing again about a non sense topic like they always do. The so called Firefighter-neighbors woke me up earlier to a fairly beautiful day. I chose this name because they are always screaming at each other until the guy has tears in his eyes or his girlfriend starts to cry. This scenario can repeat up to 5 times a day... When I walked by the Firefighter-neighbors I greet my good old friend Fred with his dog Icarus who sits on a bench a couple meters away from me and has a huge grin on his face while observing the arguing couple. He is the one staring at people, laughing and enjoying not being the one in the middle of the fight. His dog Icarus is known for his kindness, he would never harm someone, anyway he is an old good boy.
            I am getting hungry, I grab my guitar and hit the road. I decide to take my usual walk to the Špilberk castle which is one of my favorite places. Not only that my heart gets warmed up by the beauty of the city view which this castle offers, but moreover the fact, that I get goosebumbs whenever I imagine how many brave men were imprisoned in here during the time of the Second World War. The thoughts people must have had in their minds while being in this cold heartless dark place of hopelessness during the German Nazi regime... *Brrr-shivering* I don't even want to think about it.
            The view from here is unbelievably perfect and you have the opportunity to see all kind of people. People always fascinated me and I very often made up stories when I saw them just walking by, which was a feast for my artistic soul, even though my inspiration and creativity sometimes overcame rational thinking which made it quite hard to socialize with people after I already had a story about their life, which they didn't want to confirm. It's a strange thing that I get so easily dragged away in my thoughts to the word of daydreaming.
            For example to me it was quite obvious that when a single mother walks up the hill with her baby-carriage must definitely be a former marathon runner who wanted to be the number one every time she run. Her long time trainer Erogan was pretty rude when motivating her with call outs like "shut up and run", "could you go any slower fat ass", "the time is running but you are not", which was not very healthy in regards to her psychical state, but a direct support to her father-complex evolved in her early years which ended up into a romance with Erogan, who left her on the spot after making her pregnant, ruined her career and resulted in her going for a casual walk alone to this beautiful castle on a sunny day like this with the new born child.
            Yeah, I loved to day-dream, but so does everyone I say to myself and keep on walking up the hill to my favorite bench. After a short while a man walks by in a really expensive looking black suit and black shoes.  His blue bow tie highlights his importance. "A real gentlemen, just the monocle and mustache is missing", I say in my thoughts and can't resist to release a quiet but hearable laughter. In the very same moment the Real Gentleman turns his head into my direction, lookes me in the eyes, spits on the ground and gives me a disgraceful, demeaning look. I know exactly that look, I have seen it too often to leave this be, too often to let him walk away just like that, too often to not get a small explosion of anger in my inner me, which need to be addressed. That's the moment I stand up and scream from the bottom of my heart: "Don't give me that look!  Who do you think you are?! I was where you are right now, money is not everything. You are not better then me!" and that's true, I really was once a rich guy having all the doors open, all the opportunities to rise and shine as they say...
            I see the man started to smile as he sees how angry he made me, he achieved what he wanted to and speeds up disappearing behind the corner of the castle.
            I sit down again and try to calm down. My thoughts are back at the days past when I was rich. It's long ago, at least 15 to 20 years that I made the spontaneous decision to buy a Lottery ticket and well who would really think that I win the grand prize of 1 billion dollars. As I was in my early twenties and my naive innocent soul was still trying to save the world, I decided to help people with the money I received all over the world instead of buying stuff I didn't necessarily need. So I traveled first to India where I thought my help is needed. The monsoon was strong that year and I arrived at the wrong time for vacation but at the right time for helping out people who obviously needed it. I helped people to rebuild their houses and build new shops for the money I won. The impact the weather had on their belongings was devastating, nothing I have seen before, nothing was spared. Houses, restaurants, shops, garages, all deleted like if a huge steam roller made a walk through this place, the only thing which was left was the despair and sadness in the citizens faces. I tried to talk and help every family I could, I talked with so many people and helped with everything I was able to.
            Your shop has been destroyed? Take some money so you get back on track.  You don't have a roof over your head? No problem, let's build a new house, here you have some money for a fresh start up. You lost your dog? I am going to search for it until I find it. I have tried my best to help people as much as I could and yes I gave every beggar I met at least a dollar, when they stopped me. I learned that people are very kind and naturally happy with their lifes even though they don't know if they will have food on the table for their family of 6 at the end of the day. At that time I was very wealthy but all I wanted is to help, to give, to support every single person in need.
            After 2 years I decided that I can't leave that quickly to travel and help the whole planet, just here are so many people in need, I just can't leave them on their own. So I spent all my money and only afterwards I realized, it's not the money the people needed here, it's the simple things, like having a roof over their heads, even if it's made out of banana leaves a place to sleep even if it's the stable of their animals, somebody to talk to so somebody finally listens to them, simple happiness caused by the lack of worrying if you can make it to the meeting on time, if your mobile phone will keep charged so you are able to keep a teleconference or if your notebook doesn't crash when you are trying to save the huge attachment from an e-mail. "More is less", my father kept saying and he was right.
            After 10 years of trying to make the Earth a better place I came back to my old neighborhood in Brno which totally changed, life was now different than back then. My unfinished education and lack of knowledge of the business environment in Europe made it quite hard for me to adapt to the real life again. I was not able to focus on things which were normal for all the others. I was not able to go to a job on an 8 to 5 routine or respecting higher authorities as I was my own boss for the last years and could do whatever I wanted whenever I wanted. Not to mention the futuristic technology of mobile phones and internet made me really worry about the future of our so called modern society.
            Sleeping outside in the cold wet heavy rain so little Kumar can get some money for his new shoes to go to school about 7 miles away on a daily basis and receive a proper education made me realize money is not everything, but sometimes a real game changer and that would be a great lesson for the Real Gentleman who just run away a few moments ago with his degrading look to show of he is something more.
            After a couple of hours watching people around Špilberk I fell asleep so that I woke up feeling kind of dizzy and the pain in my stomach I felt was not easy to ignore. I walked faster down to Česká Street as the sun was going down. Suddenly I find a 100 Crown bar-note on the ground. "This is my happy day!" I scream out loud in the back of my head, all the bad thoughts fade when I think what I can buy for such a respectful finding. I go to the first shop I see and buy something to drink, bread with ham so I get through the day and some sweets as I am still a little bit of a child even in my old days now, I start to feel the pain in my stomach again. This is the second day I didn't eat anything.
            It's getting darker on the streets of Brno, this is when the night life begins. I sit down on Česká Street next to the main square and start playing my guitar. As usual many people walk by, just a few interested in my good old Czech songs. This is the time when I see three drunk men walking closer. One of them has a bottle in his hand, the second one is fat and obviously very drunk as he can't walk straight, the third one is a very tall muscular man, pointing at me while telling a story to the other two guys I can't hear from the distance. As they come closer it gets very clear that all three of them are very drunk. The fat guy says: "Play Kabát*". "I don't know how it's played", I reply. The tall guy starts to laugh. The one with the bottle in his hands gets even closer to me and repeats after his friend: "Play Kabát, you scumbag". As I start shaking my head, the tall one comes to my baseball cap with the money I made today by playing. I shout at him "Leave it, that's mine!" This is the moment when the drunkest one with the bottle of rum as it seems comes at me and hits me in the face. He spills a part of his rum on me.
The tall one takes all my money and then they run off. I stay still laying on the ground, speechless, hurt. I see them running away, laughing and think to myself, what did I do wrong to this world, do I deserve this? It's not anger I am filled with, it's sadness about the fact, that I helped so many people and still get rejected by them and beaten up by drunksters. The only good thing is that my face now hurts more than the pain coming from my stomach.
            After a while of recovering I decide to get my other stuff from my usual place next to the firefighter-neighbors. I pass by Fred and give Icarus the ham I buyed, because my appetite faded away since my head hurts. I sit down at my place over thinking the whole day and what I did in the last week that I deserve such a treatment. In the cold dark night, thinking for myself I quietly sing "the sun is shining and the grass is green, so quit your whining and being mean" when a young couple with a child appears. The child starts to jump up and down screaming: "Daddy, daddy, give me money!" she must have noticed my baseball cap on the ground.
* A very known Czech rock band
The father desperately looks at his wife. She says: "Come on, it's her big day". The man takes out his wallet and gives to his daughter 5 Crowns. The girl runs fearless to me, places a coin in my baseball cap and says: "More is less, my father always says". A cold shivering goes through my whole body when hearing the words my father also kept saying. As they walk along I notice it's the very same man I have met today on Špilberk. Before they disappear in the darkness the Real Gentleman looks into my eyes and smiles.
            My heart stops for a second and I say out loud: "Heh, today was a good day."

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