I looked up from where I stand on Duwamish quay. The night is clear;
the waxing moon rises over my shoulder, and I hear the gentle rolling
of water past the barges that are lined up in the Duwamish. My eyes
fell on a worn looking barge with purple paint peeling off everywhere.
I looked up and met the eyes of a ferry woman with silver hair. She
smiled and signaled me on board. My feet moved forward and I found
myself on board the barge as if in a trance. I was soon in the middle
of the moonlit sea and under the bright moonlight, I could see the
outline of what Alice, the ferry woman told me was the Island of
Ancestors.

Alice stops by the shore and I saw a grove of apple trees. These were
the biggest apples I ever saw and their fragrance filled the air. I
could see a moonlit path between the trees and I follow it to a mound.
In the centre of the side is a doorway made of two immense upright
stones topped by a massive lintel. There are two torches burning at
the door providing light for the entrance into a passageway. At the
far end of the passage is a faint red glow.

I was suddenly gripped by fear and I froze in my tracks while cold
sweat just poured from my paralysed body. I could feel a surge of
energy from beyond the end of the corridor. I heard a sharp sound that
pierced the still night air and the sound grew into a series of
shrieks. My mind will filled with images of all the evil that I know
in my imagination and I saw something flying towards me from the red
glow. I wanted to run but I could only stare ahead. I could not even
close my eyes… The flying object grew and split into four as it
neared me… and I start to realise to my embaressment that they were
the 2 pairs of love birds from the bay! The birds flew past me into
the night and I was immediately able to move.

I proceed down the corridor and emerge into a shadowy great hall. In
the centre is a hearth with the glowing embers of a fire. Seated
before the fire facing away from me is a hooded figure. Across the
hearth from this figure is a bench. I circle halfway around the hearth
clockwise and sit facing the figure. My grandmother looked up from the
hood and smiled. She has passed over to the other side fmore than 2
decades ago, but her smile was so full of love and compassion that I
felt absolutely no fear. I just looked into her eyes and savored the
connection and intimacy of the moment.

“You looked confused” Ma Ma said as a matter of fact. “What is it that
you want to know?”

“Ma Ma, I have rediscovered my true nature and purpose in life, but I
am so scared of the uncertainty that awaits me… …” The words just
flowed past my lips in our dialect, as if they had waited all a long
time for this very moment.

The gentle smile never left Ma Ma face as she reached into her pocket
and took out a handkerchief. She handed it to me and I recognised it
to be my own… the smell was so familiar and I was suddendly back to
ahen I was 5 years old again. I was washed by a deep sense of peace
and joy.

“You only need to stop thinking and start living” she wispered, “Let
your inner child come out and play, you have imprisoned him for long
enough, he is a part of you, a very important part”.

“Make a commitment to me now. Promise to accept and love this inner
child. Can you do it?” Ma Ma said in a serious yet calm tone.

I hesitate foe a split second before replying, “Ye… Yes”.

“How?” She asked. “Tear a page from your journal, write down your
commitment, sign it and give it to me… …”

I begin to write as emotions bubbled out of my spirits and flowed down
my cheeks as tears of life. i felt alive again as I penned these
words.

“I promise to accept and love my inner child and be the best that I
can be. I wil not imprison myself anymore and I reslove to start
living fully every moment of my life starting from now!”
She waved her hand and I complied and finished my circuit around the
hearth, go behind her, and pass out of the mound and back along the
path. I was still crying uncontrollably and it feels so fresh and
good.

I wiped my tears and re-board the barge to Duwamish as the first light
of dawn breaks over the eastern horizon. It wasn’t long before I was
back at the Duwamish Inn feeling more complete and at peace than I
have ever been since I can remember… …