This ole House…

The House that Jack Built, was a showground attraction that I had the misfortune of encountering way back when…  The ‘house’ was a mish mash of around three floors with oddly angled walls and surfaces far from horizontal or vertical.  So much so that to walk around it without using hands against walls to steady oneself was impossible…  Imagine closing your eyes and being in a perfectly familiar and level room or two; you’d still have to wonder just where exactly you were on the floor?  It was that confusing; senses in turmoil…

I preferred the Helter Skelter!  At least with that you could have a decent slide on a horse-hair type of mat – obviously to avoid friction burns to your bottom.  However, at the request of my brother who promised he would look after me,  I relented and entered.  There was only one way in, and one way out.  My loving brother made off like a dog with a sausage leaving me stranded in the dullness of an impossible and unfathomable maze!

After some time I eventually escaped that ludicrous labyrinth and found myself out in the fresh air, separated from my family, tears soaking my grubby little face and holding the hand of a perfect stranger!  The World around me was a congregation of strangers, loud and pointless showground music, pops, bangs, whistles, chimes, peeps and many other indescribable noises that pierced my ears and confused me even more.  The site of candy floss, toffee apples, cuddly toys and cowboy hats offered no consolation, where otherwise they might well have – hooking a duck or dislodging a coconut couldn’t have been further from my mind!  Under my breath and in my head I was pleading with God to help me find my mother and no amount of tugging on my part could separate my hand from the stranger that dragged me with concerned haste from one spot to another!  My sobbing continued and a familiar, aching lump in my chest lodged itself with intent, placed there by my ever-present nemesis, fear…

Sensing a momentary loosening of the grip of my strange guardian’s hand, I made off and ran straight into mum, winding her and taking her breath!  She had been there all along, remonstrating with the man back at the door of The House that Jack Built, back at the exact same door that I’d dashed out of a short while before!  With an anxious glance back there was no stranger…and though confusing and unnerving at the time…

…I sometimes feel I could do with holding that hand again.

Isaiah 41:10


About Robert

A fifty-something, retired Celestial Travel Agent. Walked many paths; some good, lots bad. Meandering through the past, plodding in the present, crawling toward the future.
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