Welcome To Cielo

December 4, 2012
Welcome To Cielo

I sat upon the coral rock formation, staring out at the bright ball of light that spanned the horizon. It was such a beautiful scene. The way the light reflected off the water, giving a shimmering effect across the lagoon. I could hear the smooth crashing of waves on the nearby shore. A flock of gulls silently hovered by, scanning the crystal blue water for a potential meal. A gentle breeze shook the palms as they swayed peacefully in the afternoon sun. Ah, the sun. It was so brilliant here, so vivid. It’s gaze filled me with warmth. As I sat on my rocky throne, something caught my eye. I peered into the small tidal pool just at my feet. No bigger than a coin, a young Sergeant Major swam freely throughout the pool. So humble, yet incredibly beautiful, I watched the little fish scurry about, his yellow and black stripes so very captivating. I spotted more entering in through an unseen hole somewhere that connected the small pool with the rest of the lagoon. Night was approaching, and these little guys had arrived to take shelter among the many tidal pools that lined the rocky coral shore. Although cautious, they were not afraid of me. I poked a finger in the pool, as one slowly approached. Taking small leaps closer and closer to my finger, he was now no more than half an inch from the tip of my nail. He waited a few seconds and then proceeded to give me three simultaneous pecks on the finger. Deducing I was not a good source of the ever so delicious algae he and his siblings had been searching for, the little fish quickly turned and swam away. I smiled to myself. It was amazing how such a small little creature could provide such interest. I looked to the sky, seeing the evening sun had fallen lower into the horizon. I gazed across the lagoon and spotted the fisherman’s wharf as the last of the boats began to return. Deciding it was time to return home myself, I rose to my feet and started my journey back to town.

Although I never much enjoyed leaving my secret beach, I enjoyed the walk back, especially in the late afternoon, when my island began to relax. I followed the windy dirt path through the thick mangroves, just as I had so many times before. The day was ending, and just like the humble Sergeant Major, the animal life had begun to settle in. I watched the cuckoo's as they returned to their nests to deliver a much awaited meal to their young. Salamanders and lizards scurried across the path, searching for a good rocky hole to climb into for the night. I walked on, enjoying the sights and sounds of my island. I reached Heron Walk, as I liked to refer to it. Here, the path met with an old wooden walkway that hung alongside the lagoon. Heron Walk only stretched for a few meters before it met back with solid ground, however, the mangroves and reeds cleared out a bit and It gave an amazing view of the entire lagoon. As I leaned against the railing for a quick break, I spotted the inspiration behind my name. Wading silently in the lagoon shallows, stood a lone Grey Heron. I regularly spotted him on my walks to and from my secret beach. He strode ever so carefully, barely creating a ripple as he searched for some quick meals before heading home to his nest somewhere among the reeds. “Such a proud looking animal”, I thought to myself. The bird stopped and froze in place, his eyes focused on a single spot below. Within the blink of an eye, his long neck jerked forward as his beak pierced the water. A split second later, he popped back up, a small silvery fish hanging half out of his beak, flapping about sporadicly. The Heron tilted back his head, opened his beak, and gulped the fish down in one smooth motion. Quickly after, he turned in my direction and spotted me watching him from afar. I locked eyes with him, as he carefully examined me. His head tilted ever so slightly, recognizing me from our previous encounters. I was no threat to him and he knew that. He turned back around and returned to his hunt, as I smiled and returned to my walk home.

I continued on, feeling the soil on my bare feet. A cool breeze had blown in from the shore and the palms and mangroves waved ever so slightly, creating a calming sound. It was a lovely afternoon. I couldn’t of asked for a better way to spend my day. This Island was everything I could of asked for and since I’ve arrived, not once have I wished to return to my old home, not that I can remember any of it. I don’t remember anything from my old life really. No home, no family. I just showed up one day. Washed up rather. That’s a story for another time though. Simply put, the town doctor told me I had amnesia and, in time, my memory would come back. It’s been 3 months since I’ve arrived here and not once have I remembered anything new. Most people here take pity on me. How sad it must seem, a young boy, lost on a remote Island without the slightest clue of who he is or where he came from. The strange thing is, I don’t feel lost at all. Many of the townsfolk ask me why I’m not dying to go home. I tell them I don’t want to go home. Although I haven’t shared this with anyone here, I recall one detail of my past life. One minute detail that may seem irrelevant to others but is immensely important to me. I recall that wherever I came from, for whatever reason, I was not happy. I don’t know why but I can feel it. From the moment I arrived here, I’ve been happy. I don’t think I ever knew what happiness was until I arrived here. But what is here you ask? Here is my sanctuary. Here is my bliss, my curiosity, my wonder, my happiness. Here is Isola del Cielo, “Island of Heaven”. My name is Falcon, and here, is my new home.

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