Cache—a collection of similar things, hidden, as an arms cache. We don’t need to know anything more about an arms cache today. There’s another kind of cache, as I discovered on my hike yesterday morning: a waterproof box with a glass top, placed on a picnic table at the bottom of the trail.
It holds an assortment of objects picked up on the trail: a yellow rubber duck, pencils, bits of metal—and now the bright pink earplug I added. Next to the cache, a nice little leather notebook invited the scrawls of hikers, celebrating the trail, friends, dogs, under the caption “rite something.”
I added a bit of praise.
There is still goodness in this world, and often it seems to be the goodness of strangers, as Blanche DuBois proclaimed at the end of “A Streetcar Named Desire.”
Relationships fail, children grow up and desert, our beautiful places are overrun with traffic, pollution and sprawl, and criminals and mad men can buy assault rifles everywhere, and do so with greater and greater frequency.
I heard the despair in President Obama’s voice when he pleaded, “Something must be done to stop this,” after listing the horrible incidents of mass murder that have marred his presidency. He has tried so hard, and so frequently, but he has been balked by the irresponsibility of Congress.
And I was heartened that the congressman from Connecticut is not going to participate in the traditional “Moment of Silence” with which the members attempt to honor the dead and wounded in Orlando. As he cried out, in the voice of a prophet, “Silence is not what this country needs!”
Instead, letters, phone calls, petitions, and the sooner-or-later ousting of this Congress, which must take responsibility for the continuing slaughter.
And now I think about the cache, and the simple things therein, and the hope and faith of the stranger who placed it on the picnic table, and the hope and faith of those of us who add our bits and pieces.