I've heard stories about this place. None of them end with the lead character skipping away whilst eating ice-cream... My new goal in life is to make it to the other side before anything unspeakable happens. I quicken my pace only to realise that I make more noise that way. 'Slow down idiot' I say to myself They'll hear me. Too late, They are lurking, waiting, wanting to finish me off.
My eyes scan the surroundings frantically looking for light. Alas the moon is my only source. Basking me in the suns pale reflected light. I stop, turn slowly around and look at it for a few seconds. A brief moment of comfort is sometimes enough to carry a person through tough situations. I take one deep breath and turn back to the path. It is darker than it was, my night eyes are ruined by an attempt to boost moral. 'Foolish idiot!' I stand motionless, waiting to recover from temporary blindness. Surely this is the end. I hear a rustle from the bushes to my left. My mind races. I can hear my own heart beating. 'Calm down' It's probably just a squirrel... a mutated squirrel...with rabies...and beady demonic eyes. A surge of adrenaline urges my every muscle to react, to run. I overcome and focus on the path ahead.
‘Try singing a song’
‘you drive me crazy…
…I just can’t sleep…
I’m so excited…
…I meant tooo beee
but it feels so goood…
baaaby thinking of you keeps me up aaall night’
My choice of song is weak. I need to force myself to stop singing. Why is the only song you can think of when surrounded by impending doom always the most inappropriate one.
The other side of the park! I’ve nearly reached it! I’m still Alive!
I can make it. Not far now. I feel the wind on my skin. Closer still. I don’t feel my legs moving beneath me yet I move quickly through the darkness. I didn’t know I could run this fast. I see someone with a dog ahead, judging from the bent over stance and hobble it’s an old person or a beggar… or an old beggar. It’s just about to arch its back bending its knees and entering the squat number two relief position (the dog not the old beggar…) before it sees me and starts barking. This dog is a hundred times better than what’s back there. A quick dodge left and right past the old man beggar and dog, I’ve done it! Civilization embraces me with its warm comforting arms.
My encounter with the demonic mutated rabies squirrel is over. I doubt I’ll ever walk alone through the park at night again.