531b - Sitting watching lighthouses

He had spent more than half of his life watching lighthouses. Invariably, he sat there staring at a lighthouse wherever it was. There was always one since he programmed all his travels inexcusably along the coast, any coast. He sat there gazing at the lighthouse and where the lighthouse was looking at. It was all about looks.

He liked lighthouses. Their shapes and colours, as all of them presented different colours.
He liked all of them without minding their height or building technical details. He said everything had their beautiful side, the side of their look. 

Now sitting on the sharp point of a small cape, tied to its rocks with his feet seeming to be molten with that sixty million year limestone, he was watching his lighthouses, one of them out of the corner of his eye on his left.  Another one, in front of him, 1,079 nautical miles far away and the farthest one visible for 6, 479 nautical miles. He preferred to talk in miles, though he had always moved in kilometers in land.

He watched them so much that he discovered their secret. They talked to one another. He told me this the time I was sitting next to him while huge six-meter waves  passed over our feet, over our feet not under them. He was stuck to the cape, I was clung to him. The wind buffeting both of us.  The foam licking us.

The lighthouse on the left, a third of mile Northwest emitted incandescent flashes from its thirty meter height with a strange formula, a period of 0.4 + < 2.1 > + 0.4 + < 7.1 > = 10. He knew what it meant. I didn’t.  He also knew the horrors happened at its feet in an uncivil war. So did I.

The other one, located on a small island nearby a little more than a mile of distance, was very sad since it had been beheaded and downgraded as a beacon. Even so, it proudly flashed in a one plus two pattern white flashes every twenty one seconds… the same as the soul weight… they say. And I say that for me it will never be a beacon, it will be a lighthouse looking at us from its 39 meters above sea level. It will be caressed by white foams from blue waves the days the South wind blows until the endless hourglass finishes all its grains.

And the last, the furthest one 8.2 nautical miles far away communicated with whoever that wanted to see it, occulting three times every sixteen seconds. Visible for 17 nautical miles, it doubled the horizon line appearing at dawn. Sixteen meter high is not too much to be proud but adding the cliff where it stands on, it reaches 60 meters high and this makes to have been recited among the capes by schoolchildren of long ago when capes and gulfs were recited… and so were litanies.  Ora pro nobis peccatoribus.

Up to there, everything was normal. A story of lighthouses and about a lover of lighthouses.

His name was Anselmo. I had met him several times, sunny days always, when I was keen on walking that beautiful route of the only Cantabrian city which looks South. It was a route very frequented any time of the day. For some people, it was their heart attack route. They had been prescribed to walk and so they did.

One day I decided to walk along that area at night. I wanted to take some pictures with the beaches lights being prominent. The area I am referring to is the splendid promenade mentioned above, which leads to a small cape, a “minor” cape. I was carrying a small torch to help the faint light of the first quarter moon strongly fighting against some brief clouds. As I was getting near the cape, I thought to perceive a feeble luminescence similar to the one glowworms emit. I lasted  hardly anything to confirm my intuition. It was him! Anselmo! I can’t specify the exact duration of hardly anything. I would swear it is only some seconds. I don’t know how many.

He also recognized me in the twilight. He recognized, even without seeing it, the gesture of worry in my face. He showed no surprise to see me there, so late when shades had taken possession of the rocks. I was relieved when he started to talk. As a spring… his words flowed.

He explained to me that at that precise moment  he was communicating with some Galician lighthouses. The Touriñán lighthouse was complaining about the fact that nobody knew it was him the one situated in the most western point  where the flat world ended, and Hades started at its feet. Cape Vilán lighthouse was telling him, as it were live, that he was attending a shipwreck, where fortunately there were no casualties. Anselmo digressed in order to remember me the famous “Serpent” shipwreck which left just there 173 salted dreams sleeping, near those huge granitic boulders. 173 souls sleeping their eternal sleep watching strong Northwest winds and storms.

He confessed without blushing he had a feverish activity with a great many lighthouses during long dark nights when the moon did not distract their communication. While he was talking to me, he constantly interrupted with news from other beacons. Anselmo kept up a love triangle with all Galician lighthouses and with those of the French Bretagne, but he did not mind keeping contact from time to time with any other one from any coast, and without considering any distance. Seemingly, the Earth curvature was not an obstacle. He played on words and he told me he loved Faro lighthouse, that brought him recent stories from Ilha Formosa. He supposed I knew “El Algarve” geography.

A strange feeling came over me. Very strange. It was almost all of a sudden. It came over when my attention to Anselmo’s pleasant talk waned. I don’t know if I was being the object of a hallucination or any paranormal phenomenon but I thought to understand some messages from a land-end cape. I don’t know if Fisterra in Saint James Way or Finisterre in the French Bretagne were talking to me. I even perceived some interferences from Maspalomas lighthouse. I looked at my feet. I had the feeling they were getting stuck to the ground. I looked at Anselmo’s feet. They were really molten with that sixty million year limestone. I paid more attention. I did not perceive any movement on his legs. His trousers were not blown by the wind. His torso did not turn around, his arms did not move. I started suspecting Anselmo was becoming petrified. A ridiculous supposition but a supposition. I looked at him in the eye. His eyes sparkled a strange light very bright… flashing and lighting the horizon. I did not stay there to count the frequency.

                                    Cabo Mayor and Cabo de Ajo, with their lighthouses, are Cantabrian recited capes.
                                    El Cabo Menor was not recited.
                                    Isla de Mouro’s lighthouse will always be a lighthouse, even if it is a beacon.

Second Prize
First Short Story Contest
Shipwrecked Association

531b·INT034·121028 · Sitting watching lighthouses ©2012  
402110418-Santander-Isla de Mouro-130-w ©2011

3 comentarios:

  1. Great story and a great shot.
    To dream.


  2. this is absolutely dreamy, I agree with Esmeralda ... in with this awesome story in my ears and my heard, I say Good Night to you my friend, and thanks for sharing this beautiful moments with us!

    Küsse mein Freund,