He measured life in years and fifty-two had gone. Sometimes he thought, on a different scale, one driven by a number that valued richness and fulfillment, but that number was too low for his liking. He had done little worth remembering, and since it didn’t matter, years were used. One lonely evening, he wandered about his house in search of a photo or note worth saving, but found none. From room to room, neither closet nor drawer contained any bit of memory. He was as newborn. He attempted sleep and failed, leaving him to realize a past could not be invented. Then a feeling settled upon him that his life, years after it had begun, was about to begin, and he did sleep–there was a woman in a bookstore in the travel aisle. In short order they were discussing dream vacations from either side of cappuccinos. Not long after, their first trip abroad, his first. More would follow. The years flew past faster than he could imagine, but he no longer measured his life in years. Richness and fulfillment far obscured his age. He was a happy man, not an older one. The woman who started it all put her book on the night table, took the pillow next to his, and they slept together, his heart filling with the memories and dreams, the voyages, the far-off lands, the splendid sights and scenes and spectacular vistas, the colors, the sounds, the scent of history – until finally, fatigued by the travel, he came to prefer home to hotel, receiving postcards to sending, and at that time, at fifty-two, his eyes tightly shut, he died a quiet death. In his sleep. With memories.
Foster Trecost writes stories that are mostly made up. They tend to follow his attention span: sometimes short, and sometimes very short. He lives in New Orleans.