100 days: Day 19



The hollow clacking of horseshoes clipping cobbles resounded across the empty streets as dusk settled in. Jacob was tired and hungry as he imagined was his trusty mule. So far the kindness of strangers had seen his travels well, they seemed content to trade food for tales of his conquests. However, as his aimless journey commenced he’d begun to detect antipathy from the locals.

So far he’d been on the road for nine days. He saw his journey as being in its infancy making him both surprised and displeased by the toll it was already taking on his generally upbeat demeanour and overall strength.

The streets had merged into a continuous extension of the same drab functional architecture with little variation. The townsfolk busied themselves under his scrutiny. He’d sit for hours in busy spots watching as swathes of inhabitants shopped, bartered, discussed the news of the day, fell in and out of love (perhaps he was projecting those instances,) and ate. He received some curious looks while jotting down notes on their regimented behaviour and was even moved on by constabulary on two occasions. Being confronted by something as unfamiliar as someone without an immediately apparent agenda scarred those so set in their systematic little lives, he internally scoffed.

What was he looking for? Everything and nothing he reassured himself, this lack of resolution fuelled his self image as an open nomadic soul and provided the impetus to keep clip clopping ahead. Life is a rich tapestry and he was going to obtain the pattern, the stitch pattern. That was one of the things he wrote in his book.


Margaret sat at the counter of her family run seven eleven. The idiot boy passed for the thirteenth time that day. She watched as he dismounted from his bike with its crudely constructed cardboard horse veneer and sat on the park bench with the notepad he’d purchased earlier that day. He pulled a theatrically rapt expression and made some annotations as he watched Terry sweep leaves.

Margaret picked up the phone and dialled.

‘Hi Sharon, hi, are you still looking for young Jacob?’

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