Notes on the Grippe

Being an accounting of the recent and continuing pandemic and its various circumstances, from the perspective of an inhabitant of the regions lately called the Lost Quarter. Dates unknown.

Day One Hundred Sixty Seven

The emptiness of the place is the first thing people notice in the Lost Quarter. The vastness with nothing to fill it. The grass, the odd tree, short and bent by the wind, and the birds darting about, low to the ground and then high, all register later. It is the sky that leaves them overwhelmed and a little frightened. More towering than any mountain and unending. Any direction they turn it goes on and on, never quite stopping.

Standing in the midst of it one can truly feel alone and tiny in the face of the universe. Utterly insignificant, in a way that you never do in a mountain range. Their grandeur is oddly comforting, inspiring thoughts of great deeds and impossible feats. A worthy adversary in every way. One can make a mark, leave a trace upon this life, equal to the mountains on this world, is the belief that comes from standing amongst them. They are a challenge to be met in some way, through conquest or contemplation.

The prairie sky is more implacable than any mountain. Nothing is obscured there and there is nowhere to hide. There is only you crouching before its vastness, understanding, as you never will anywhere else, that you are speck of insignificance in the face of the universe. All that you do will leave no mark that the wind cannot wear away.

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