In the previous chapter we left John Builder and his wife in their new house. Jeff, George and Jerome stayed in base camp but were to have a new home very soon as well. Rose and Lizzy had been the first ones to live in a real house after the shipwreck. Rose is teaching the children, Lizzy and Jerome, in a small primitively build school, partially used as a library with the books they found in a big trunk that washed ashore. They still hoped to be rescued, but were getting more or less used to the idea there probably wouldn’t be any rescue at all. So time passed…
Without any doctors on the island, Miriam was fortunate to not encounter any problems or complications during her pregnancy. She was in good hands with Rose, who came over every day to take care of practical pregnancy matters.
And so it happened that after almost 40 weeks, John and Miriam became the proud parents of a beautiful girl. They called her ‘Nikki’.
There were no winters in this part of the world nor was it ever cold. When it was the rainy season, and the evenings were dark, our friends used to meet up at the old camp or visited each other in their respective homes and got to know each other better.
Jeff was the first one to talk about his family. “You know, you never know how much you love your family until you can’t visit them anymore. After finishing college, I didn’t know what I wanted to do. Most kids my age know by then what they want… but not me… Whenever he could, my dad would ask if I had made up my mind already.
Especially during dinner I hated it when they brought the subject up. –Have you thought about what you’d like to do? You can’t just earn a living by fishing or gardening!– I told them I wouldn’t mind being a gardener or a fisherman but in their opinion I should do something more hm… rewarding. It was if though they didn’t want to be remembered how their parents worked the soil. In my opinion it’s very important to provide food for people.
It was my sister who came to my rescue. While she put some leftovers in the fridge, she said – “Why don’t you take a sabbatical? You rest your head from studying and after that you might see clearly what you want.” –
Jeff sighed. “She’s a very clever girl, my little sis… I really miss her. Even as a kid, she had it clear she wanted to be a painter. Other girls wanted to play with dolls or toy kitchens… but she only wanted an easel and learn how to paint.
Then the idea came up to go on this cruise and see a bit more of the world.” He stayed silent for a while and after that he said: “I never thought I would miss my family this much” and he swallowed. “Have you people thought about your future if nobody is going to find us?”
George answered “O please, hush! I really don’t want to think about that! For now we should be grateful to be alive and all that matters for me… for you… and for Jerome is to wait for Lizzy to grow up!”
“Yeah… and we all see Lizzy as our younger sister! No, it definitely wouldn’t work… a romantic relationship with Lizzy.”
Lizzy looked up and asked: “Are you talking about me?”
“Yes honey… we were just saying how wonderful you take care of Nikki.” answered Miriam.
Lizzy felt important and continued playing with the little girl.
John Builder had been the lucky one. He had found his future with Miriam, but he understood what the boys meant. “You are so right boys, this is a problem… not only for you but for the others and for Lizzy and our little Nikki as well… to grow up with no boys around. I have been thinking about it earlier. If we only could contact the world! I know I am a handy man fixing many things but I know that we have a lot of stuff in the piles I really cannot use because they are too technical for me. Technology is a field where I fail. I don’t have a feeling for that kind of thing.”
George looked at him and said: “You should have told me before because I am very handy with technology. I just didn’t mention it, thinking that you were the one in charge of everything. I always helped you with the things you wanted me to help you with.”
“Well then…, I would suggest you to come and have a look at the pile of stuff I’m not able to use. Perhaps you can fix something… some receiver or whatever. If you have time tomorrow, we could go to base camp where I have stored it in boxes.”
George agreed with that.
John continued: “Hey, it’s getting late. The children have to go to bed.”
They said their goodbyes and they went to their own house.
“What do you say Jeff? Do you think you can use that stuff to make some kind of sending device or receiver?”
Jeffrey scratched his head while looking at the small pieces John just put on the table. “Yes John, I need stuff like this but it’s not enough. I will need something that can serve as an antenna.”
John looked a bit disappointed. “We hardly can expect an antenna to wash ashore!”
“No… But an empty juice can could do the trick. Yes… we’ll have to look for that and for more stuff like that” Jeff pointed at the small pile with a move of his arm. “I think you better let me search, because I know what I need.”
John was relieved to hear that. “Okay, I’ll leave this task to you. Thank you buddy, I’m going home now because I promised Miriam to help her teaching Nikki to walk and talk.”
“Nice task you’ve got there” said Jeff. Toddlers are so cute… I wonder if I will have one of my own someday… pffff.”
“Of course man, that’s one of the reasons why you are making a sender, or receiver. Keep your head up; The world is getting to be a place well known, and even if this would be an island, recently risen from the depths of the ocean, they will find it and chart it… and one day they will find us.”
Jeff sighed “At home everything seemed so easy and natural… and I used to complain about unimportant things. Who would have known this would happen?”
“Yeah, you sure get another view on life and the priority of things change. Geez… hear us with this philosopher’s talk!” John laughed.
The two men went their own way, but they had gotten closer than ever.
When John came home he found Miriam teaching Miriam how to walk and he said “I will take it over honey… you go and do something else.”
Miriam laughed “Yes, now that she can almost walk… I want to have the merit to myself. You can start teaching her to talk… just wait a minute…”
John sat down to start teaching Nikki some words. But she was so pleased with her new skill that she didn’t feel like sitting down for ‘talking’.
Anyway, she was hungry. They gave her a bottle and after that she started to yawn. They put her in her crib and looked at their baby being very proud parents. Tomorrow he would try again to teach her the first words.
To be continued…