Sunday, 15 December 2013

Apple Christmas

Once there was an apple and in that apple there lived a worm called Bob. Bob was happy in his apple, he had, in worm time lived there for quite a while, he called the apple home. The apple (a slow witted and slightly grumpy apple) called himself Mr Apple but Bob was unaware of this as the two, despite their ongoing close proximity were not on regular speaking terms. This was mostly down to the lack of a common language, there is you may know, no translation available from worm to apple and vice versa. They'd both learned to live with the situation and Bob was really quite happy quietly munching through the dark interior of Mr Apple.

I suppose that it was bit of a non symbiotic, one sided arrangement they had. Bob nibbling away on the apple's flesh and the apple sitting there, somewhere in the apple universe waiting to be picked or eaten or to simply go to seed. Who knew where they were in the universal chain of those clever and complex universal things? There was a pleasant kind of purposelessness about it all though bob never really wondered about the world beyond the apple and the apple (Mr sleepy Apple) didn't really wonder about anything. He was busy just being an apple and he had few if any aspirations of anything beyond being an apple. In one lucid moment he recalled thinking, “I am what I am, I am an apple.” That was that then.

It came about one day that Bob, in his quiet and discrete (and wonderfully painless) tunnelling and munching came across a barrier he had previously not encountered. A thick, tough material that wasn't just apple and through which a bright light (what exactly is light?) was filtering in a red (what exactly is red?) haze. Bob stopped for a while and considered this new and unfamiliar stretched skin that blocked the end of the food tunnel. After lengthy consideration he decided to make a decision. A risky one at that. He was going, using his very best worm dentures and techniques, to bite through the skin and continue his ongoing apple exploration...outside of the apple. He pondered for a while; “had any worm ever done this before?” He called out to Mr Apple, “hello, I'm about to bite through your skin (I think), please contact me if there is any pain. Though Bob meant well with this, Mr Apple only heard “blah, blah, blah” in apple talk. It was of course down to translation. He ignored the irritating blah sound and returned to his apple snooze.

Bob bit. Apple flinched but did not wake. Bob bit more. He bit (and chewed though the taste was not so good as the normal tunnel material) until he'd formed a tiny hole in the apple's skin. Bob pushed up against the hole, blinked and squinted and looked out through. The light made him blink a bit more, he wasn't used to this. There were things out there he could not understand. Great fields of colour, washes of light, odd shapes, shimmering movements and sounds that were both sharp and dull and everywhere. Life outside of the apple seemed quite unusual and exciting. Bob hadn't expected any of this. Bob bit more to increase the hole sized. Mr Apple snored in lazy apple talk.

Bob made the hole big enough to get his head through. He didn't really think but if the hole was bit enough for his head then it was also big enough for the rest of him. Sometimes worms lose their appreciation of their spacial dimensions as they dig and progress. Worms tend not to score highly in self perception and awareness tests, but that's a whole other science. Bob stuck his head out. His first impression was that the world outside of apple was warm and it had a fresh, non-apple kind of aroma. Bob then realised that all he'd ever had to smell was apple and as this was his main smell reference point then a wider world full of thousands of new smells could prove over whelming. That might be dangerous but it was exciting and so he kept his head out and slowing took in the new apple free air. This process went on for a while. I'm not sure how long, worm time is not like other time. Only worms get it or experience it. If that seems strange then I'm sorry but that's how it is.

After all the effort to break out through the skin, Bob was a little tired. He was also struggling for. time reference points in all this light so he retreated into the tunnel a few lengths and popped off for a snooze. The world could wait until he'd rested and digested he decided. A few worm hours later he awoke smothered and dominated by a new desire to explore the world outside of the apple, or at the very least the world beyond the skin. Bob prised himself through the hole and tentatively slid and wriggled out of the confines of the apple tunnel and onto the great and unexplored surface of the skin. “Wow! This is a big place,” thought Bob. “This is the world outside of an apple, whoosh!”

Bob looked all around, 360 degrees, seeing things but not sure what he was seeing. Not many people know that worms have photographic memories, this power enabled bob to record a great deal of useful data as he slowly circumnavigated the great girth of Mr Apple. Mr Apple was bigger than Bob had imagined but no too big to cover in a day's worm time (including photographic processing). Once he'd been right round the apple skin and returned unharmed by the experience Bob retired back deep into the tunnel and fell fast asleep. You may be gathering that worms and apples both spend a lot of time sleeping. Then he dreamt a few heavy dreams, dreams of the outside beyond apple, the great chasm between in and out, safety and danger, the familiar and the unknown. I was a pretty good sleep. Even Mr Apple seemed to be sleeping more soundly than ever.

And so it was that unknown to Bob and Mr Apple the big world calendar was flicking pages and days over and over and as they slept and digested and ripened the time that is known as Christmas Eve came around. There on that winter's night Mr Apple sat on a white china plate, serene and sleeping. Beside him was a clean carrot, a glass of whisky and a mince pie. Some later time in worm time a fat man in red appeared in the room, he guzzled the whisky and swallowed the mince pie and grimaced, it was a tough gig being out all night. Mr Apple and the carrot sensed nothing as the fat man placed them in his deep fur lined pockets and vaporised out of the warm room and up onto the roof the house. Once there, out in the chilly night air he patted his favourite red nosed reindeer, whispered a few magic words and placed the apple and the carrot into the animal's mouth. Crunch. Yum yum.

No comments:

Post a Comment