I-Land is where memories and experiences turn into short stories, personal journal entries and narration in first person, part memoir, part fiction, exploring topics such as the relation between humans and the societies they live in.

Wonderers — An Xavier Letter


‘People remember what they ought to forget and forget what they ought to remember.’

December 15, 2014 – WONDERERS

Dear Victor,

I’ve been thinking about what you wrote. I’ve been thinking a great deal about it.

I’m going to respond with a detailed letter, touching on everyone and everything. Give me a few days.

In the meantime, I heard from Albert and MJ the other day. They said they had visited with you recently. They had a good time, they said, and loved the garden. I hope you enjoyed having them, you know how fond of you they are, how they value your take on life.

It was Albert’s birthday a week ago, did you know? He turned seventy.

I, on the other hand, turned thirty-five. A few days ago.

Big milestones, if one’s counting.

I’m not counting. I try not to, but others, they count. They remember. Others always remember and never let one forget what is one’s privilege to forget. They remember what they ought to forget and forget what they ought to remember.

They don’t ask what one wants, or needs.

They remember to wish you a happy birthday, telling you it’s a very important day in your life, one that deserves to be acknowledged and highlighted, but they forget to acknowledge and highlight what really matters to you.

As if the remaining 364 days of the year were not important, nothing but stepping stones leading to your birthday.

As if we were born to celebrate the day we were born.

It’s the other way round; we were born to celebrate the life we live, our birthdays the intermissions we need during our life marathon, important pit stops where we may refuel and go over our various achievements, remembering the people and events truly important to us, celebrating the real accomplishments in our lives.

Isn’t it funny how it works? Even with those who know us best? They remember the highlights but forget everything that comes with them — the essence, the lava of the content — they lose sight of all that, focusing on the hard and cold outer shells, the celebrated, crusted appearances.

Always the appearances.

Watch this space for Part 2