By Frampton Jones
Potia Pitchford will no doubt be remembered for her kindness. She was a quiet person, too easily overlooked amidst the dramas of island life. The good she did will linger on. It makes a rather nice change to imagine something lingering on in a non-sinister way and without distinct connotations of threat.
Hers was an odd departure, to say the least. Numerous eyewitnesses have largely agreed over what happened, and I will share their combined story to the best of my ability.
You may recall the most recent shipwreck was largely a washing ashore of bits of wood, with little semblance of boat and no apparent survivors. We haven’t even had any bits of bodies to bury from this one. There are however, quite a few extra nails, which is always a source of excitement.
Potia was in the party responding to the shipwreck. She usually has been, turning up with blankets for anyone emerging from our viciously cold waters. Witnesses tell me that the sea was in an especially odd mood that day, with larger and more impressive horses in the surf than is normal. They tell me she walked out to one of those incoming horses, mounted it, and rode away into the surf. She has not been seen since.
We all have a fair idea how long someone can survive in the water at this time of year. Clearly, she could not have survived in the water.
We all know that surf horses aren’t substantial and do not last for long. Clearly, no one could ride a surf horse.
We all know that it is impossible to leave the island. Clearly, she cannot have successfully left the island. Especially not on an insubstantial surf horse.
And if all of that is so, then there is no accounting for what really happened.
We will have to chalk it up as one of life’s many mysteries.
In the meantime, let me remind you that the sea is very cold, and that surf horses are largely insubstantial, and that trying to leave the island in this way is very likely to kill you. Failure to find a body does not mean that death has not occurred. We often don’t find the bodies. Bodies are highly edible and we are surrounded by hunger.
The Kickstarter that caused all these obituaries is still running – we have funded, and you can still pledge https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/countrostov/tales-of-hopeless-maine