Nine pm, the Elba’s waters are beating the bank where I quietly sit. It’s dark, and there’s only the sound of the waves, and the road behind me, and the engine of the MV Explorer. Here it is, right in front of me, white and blue, gorgeous and glittering like a Christmas tree. I watch it from the harbor, hidden in the dark of the bridge. People are walking up and down the roofed walkway to the right from where I sit, but no one notices me. People aren’t usually very attentive. They don’t even see you passing by. They only see what they want to see. But the one who searches will always find, and no one’s searching for me.
It’s very strange to be here, to sail aboard this ship, to be a part of SAS. I wanted it so badly, and now I’m here, and I can’t fully admit the idea. So here I am, sitting alone in the dark, breathing in the fresh scent of the river, and the chain bridge is going up and down behind my back with a gentle rattle. I’m eating figs and blueberries out of a plastic container, best dinner ever. These blueberries! Seriously boys, I don’t need roses, perfumes or jewelry. Just give me chocolate and blueberries. Ramen.
Last blueberry eaten. It feels a little bit lonely here, in the shadow, far from the jolly parties and bottomless drinks and all that the people of my age run after in ports like this one. But I wouldn’t have joined even if asked to. I so hate crowds and drunkards and loud music. What would I do there, watching people have fun that’s just not fun for me?
But now, a more up-to-date question: how am I supposed to bring this goddamn fork back to the ship?!!
Oh yes, I did steal a fork from the ship. It made my late night dinner so much more convenient. I’m not supposed to do that, but I stuck the fork behind my belt and let my shirt down, and walked right through security. The metal detector beeped, of course, but no one cares when you go out and not in. Bringing the fork back onboard could be more complicated. Of course I could just put it in the scanner with a poker face, but it would be a shame to get any discipline points for a damned fork which I even brought back.
For a few moments I seriously considered dumping it in the harbor waters, just like pirates used to get rid of unsafe treasure. Ditch the fork and be done with it. But no, replied my conscience, that’s just not right. In the end, it’s not the fork’s fault fresh fruit are not allowed onboard. Besides, I don’t usually go around destroying ship property.
Fork washed in the muddy water and stuck behind my belt, I make my way back to the security. I smile at the guards – I know them all by names. I walk through the detector, and of course the cursed thing beeps. I look around innocently. The guards smile at me. “Do you have a cellphone in your pocket? Might be it”.
Of course I do have a cell, but why would it beep? Nevertheless, I remove it from my pocket and lay it into the small bin. I walk back to the detector with no illusions. But – what is it? – it doesn’t beep!
Confused, I collect my cell, bid goodnight to the guards and go to my cabin. How come a metal fork not beep in the detector? I examine the fork. Metal. Metal, huh?
Thoroughly washed and dried, the fork is returned to the dining hall, where it rests with its sisters under smooth white cloth. And I crawl into bed with a book, satisfied.