The old clock stood still in more ways than one. Dusty and heavier than it appeared, it leaned against the cold aluminum wall seemingly frozen in time. The seconds hand hasn’t worked since its been here, it was more of a memory of what was than anything of actual use. If push came to shove, it could be fashioned into a weapon of some sort. Stolen from a ransacked high school, it didn’t even work anymore. Never mind it not working, it was an analog clock. Something many in the world had no idea how to read. Need to know the time? Check your phone, wall, or wristband. We didn’t teach children how to tell time anymore. For the past century, everything has been completely and unwaveringly digital.
The change didn’t come all at once. It crept up in waves, the way the water in the ocean flows with each pulse of sun shining down. Starting out small, the waves hitting against your ankles and you run backwards to admire it from afar. Before you know it, the tide has come up and the water is above your waist. You haven’t been paying attention and the cool and salty water envelops you in the change of the riptide. Before you allow yourself to become utterly encapsulated within the depth of the ocean, you push against the current towards the shore and finally feel the sand against you, collapsing next to broken sand dollars and forgotten kite parts. From this view, you realize how much less than a drop in the ocean your body sometimes feels. Turning around, you can see the broken down shack formed with aluminum walls and filled with strangers. You’ve ventured out on your own before and ended up here. Shelter, more than what was available before. Occasionally some food.
Time is now the most useful commodity between us. Money has become a thing of the past. We exchange time, memories, and experiences instead.
–To be continued