Modern-day Crusoë sends message

SAN FIASCO, CA -- San Fiasco police were visited today by Guillermo Jerez, a 6-year-old boy who presented them with a bottle he'd found on the beach. In it was a piece of paper. To their surprise, the police discovered that this was a message from Wall Street banker Ernest Olafsson, who'd gone missing in late August during a cruise. Mr Olafsson, the letter shows, is still alive and on a small, uninhabited atoll somewhere in the South Pacific. In his letter, he urges whoever reads it to start a search for him. But the piece of paper also contains some personal thoughts. Here are some excerpts:
"Another crate arrived today. I swam out to find it contained some useful supplies. I've emptied a lot of bottles now and will continue to send messages. [...] Much as I try to avoid it, my thoughts turn to home and to Wall Street. It feels as if God Himself has picked me to fall from the cruise ship and end up on this island, to suffer this horrible fate. [...] I know I haven't always been the kindest of people. Still, I hope that no one will think ill of me. But I guess I'm already the newest joke over at the World Trade Center. 'Where's Ernest?' they'll say. 'He's always first to arrive and last to go. But now...' Well, if any of you are reading this: you have no idea what real suffering and hardship is. The pain that I'm going through, both physically and mentally, and the anguish that my family must feel in these dark days, are a million times worse that anything that will happen in your lives. You'll just get up every morning, go to your dreary job in the Twin Towers, and go back home at five. [...]"
"Today, a plane flew overhead again. I lit up my fire, shouted and danced as per usual, but to no avail. Deep in my heart of hearts, I know that these planes are far too high to ever see me. But they inspire me nonetheless. To me, the plane is a symbol of hope and happiness. It keeps me alive. [...] There is only one good thing about this experience: I value life much more. I've been thinking about world peace. Back at my old job, it would have been just an empty phrase. But now, I can envision it. All those wars going on in the Middle East, countries bombing other countries, killing innocent civilians... it is barbaric. If I ever get back home, I'll dedicate the rest of my life to achieving peace around the world."
The FBI have been handed the letter. Having presumed Olafsson dead, the Feds had not yet assembled a search party. But now, according to an unnamed source at the bureau, a special taskforce can be sent down to the Pacific as early as May next year.

Posted by cronopio at 03:21 AM, December 14, 2001 | Comments (0)