The Iliad, the lost years

I could be even more self-aggrandizing if I wanted to.

Something mythic like:

The Iliad, the lost years

Dan and I were prisoners of our feet in a padded cell on the most beautiful beach on the island of Corfu, a petrified boat looming off the shore.

We marked time by bread.The days were fresh, crusty, stale, hard and then fresh again (Well, sometimes there were two hard days before fresh came back).

I was aimlessly waiting either for the jagged gouge on my sole to heal, or for my only pair of shoes to reappear (imagine the walk up the hill to the bus stop, the 45 minute ride(standing up) to the only town on the island, and then wandering around the town looking for a shoe store, all with filthy bare feet and newspaper stuck to the bottom by dried blood to act as a bandage).

It was much easier to stay at the pink palace, lying on the beach, drinking Coca Cola and beer and watching a passing stream of the idle young rich. And tending after Dan, who had woken up one morning with two sprained ankles and no particular memory of it (a prestigious feat, to be sure).

The ketchup had begun to ferment at the end of August. By the middle of September we had to be careful when opening it as it would ooze up out of the bottle onto the table. It seemed to be an acquired taste, but I don’t think we were eating it to be noticed, we were already that.Nor for the alcohol, we were far from poor, and with beer a buck a quart and free ouzo each night from a stew pot if you were willing to have a few plates smashed over your head, we were always as drunk as we wanted to be.We were just used to the ketchup.

Even Doc George was giving us a cut off our room rates, and his dad would sneak us free goat sandwiches for lunch. We were a lost leader,I guess.

But it all ended with a whimper. Dan still wasn’t healed, but he had to get to anAmerican Express office, soJen drove him to the boat which would get him to the train.

My shoes reappeared one day beside the kitchen, bleach clean. The next day I went into town and bought the cheapest ticket I could find toNorthern Europe. It was on the Czechoslovakian airline. Ren and I (he on his way back to Finland where his first opera was about to open) satin the town square drinking fizzy yellow stuff, counting ugly white leather shoes. When we reached 50 we left for the airport.