In the Land of Ordinary

There was a small boy who lived in the Land of Ordinary.  If you asked the boy, he would say he was the most ordinary of all the boys in the land, but his mother knew this was not true. His mother knew that he was quite extraordinary.  She saw that the boy was different, and she fostered those differences. Sometimes, other children would tease him for the differences and he would plead with his mother to help him change, to help him be more ordinary.  His mother would wrap him in her loving arms and shush away his whimpers. But never, did she work to change him, for she knew what he did not.

Time passed and the boy grew into a man.  He remained close to his mother and often sought her advice. The boy worked an ordinary job and married an ordinary woman and they had ordinary children. Everything in his life seemed to fit in perfectly with the Land of Ordinary. But he wasn’t ordinary.

One day, food in the village began to run out. Children began to starve. People began to eat dirt instead of the lush bounty they had had before. The boy’s mother sought him out and told him now was his time. The boy, unsure of what she meant, pondered her words as he watched those around him suffer and wither.

In time, the boy began to build a bridge. The bridge was magnificent. The bridge led the people to life, to food, to the extraordinary.  With excitement he rushed to the town square and called out to all that they could be saved if only they would cross the bridge, they could leave the Land of Ordinary behind and find the extraordinary.

But the people were too busy. They did not have time to travel across the bridge. Most had time only to give a fleeting glance toward the bridge and mutter an insignificant compliment intended to acknowledge that they saw it. But they did not care to cross it.

The boy plopped down in the dirt near the edge of the bridge, his heart full of sorrow.  Why would no one even look at his bridge? Why did they refuse to cross it? Just as he gave up hope, an old man approached him.

“Can I cross the bridge?” the man asked, his smile revealing rotted teeth. The old man’s clothes were worn and dirty, his hair was matted and filled with bugs. The boy was unsure if the man was even strong enough to make it across the bridge, but he jumped up with excitement and pointed the way,  joy flooded over them both.

Before long, another vagabond approached and asked to cross the bridge, and then another and another. They were not who the boy expected, but he was no less pleased to see them.  His mother stood at a distance and watched with great pride as her son fulfilled his calling. She knew that the bridge was special, that it was reserved for those who were willing to move from the Land of Ordinary to the Land of the Extraordinary.

-Ande