He reached out his hand to a call bell and pressed the button on it, in a short while Marry knocked in at the door.
The old man said with his usual smiling face and Marry responded with her lips curved upward without a smile.
“Get my friends some drinks, the best of ours to be certain.”
Marry swirled back on her place and went downstairs.
“Does not she talk?”
“Oh of course she does, she talks a lot, but she is a little shy with new people.”
Both of us stood up to look around the room.
On the left wall, as we approached, the old man said pointing his finger to the painting hung there.
“That is a copy of ‘The Starry Night’.”
We looked at it and nodded and moved forward towards the next wall.
“Look at it, what do you see?”
I looked at it.
“I see the moon, the stars, a town and a church maybe in middle of that.”
“And you, boy.”
“The same, maybe I even see a little lesser that she does.”
“That is what most people see, you see? You look at it and see what the painter sees but you don’t see what the painter feels and this is the secret behind paintings. People think that they will never be able to decipher what the painter had felt. But what if he was just bored and drew the only damn scene he could see out of his window?
Isn’t there a probability to it?”
The old man said.
The old man looked at us with his deep eyes. And he spoke slowly.
“Van Gogh painted it from the window of his asylum, he drew almost twenty one variations of it. ‘Through the iron-barred window,’ he wrote to his brother, Theo, ‘I can see an enclosed square of wheat . . . above which, in the morning, I watch the sun rise in all its glory.’ ’’
“So he did not draw it in some lonely boring night.”
“No, I am sure not.
“A man who lies in the middle of a room, knowing he might never walk again, or maybe that the last world he can experience is limited to the sight he can see, and when he looks out of his window, and in the burnt off fire. He looks more than you would ever do. And that is beautiful.
“And beautiful things, my children are made to be felt and not to be deciphered.”
The old man said.
It is hard, I thought, to have something for a limited amount of time in your life and to be able to rightfully decide if to feel it or decipher the very mean of its being.
The old man looked pale, lacking the blood that could flow through his veins and heart. The skin on his face wrinkling and he looked right in the middle of another painting on the wall.
“Do you know her?”
He asked with a glee.
“She is Ophelia, from the Hamlet.”
“I remember her.”
Bob looked at me, as if I were his dearest friend knowing something only two of us knew.
“She dies in a weedy ditch, fallen from a tree. Singing songs. Drowning and drowning.”
“And how is that when a character reveals into an emotion and the death of it is not the primary concern anymore, which had been actually created to kill a part of those who see it, even long after it is gone.”
“Would not it be a treacherous thought to believe that a character is always something else but himself?”
“That is the point, treacherousness is the very point of art.”
Marry knocked on the door, she had many bottles of different drinks kept in big serving plate covered by a large white cloth.
“I shall bring the glasses in second run.”
She said, assuming the incoming question.
“Thank you Marry, I will appreciate it.”
Ian sent ours with his.
Marry smiled, kept the plate on the table beside Bob’s bed and returned just to show up after a while with three glasses.
“Would you like to drink with us?”
Bob asked her.
To which she revealed the fourth glass from back of waist and chuckled.
Bob sat up against the headrest and Marry on the side of his feet.
We got back to our stools to enjoy some oarsman Ale and third cost beer.
“Rafael liked the Amber Ale, he would drink a lot of it, glasses and bottles.”
“A good friend he had been to me.”
“The friend who died last winters?”
The old man said, sipping the drink from his glass.
“It is so ridiculous that people die all the times.”
The old man glanced at him with his all ever kept soft smile and continued drinking.
Marry kept his half emptied glass on the table and looked at Ian with her eyes half closed. I could sense a denial on her face.
“No, people don’t die all the times. They die once, it is not ridiculous…”
Bob said in reprimanding voice.
“You children think that the world is so big and there is so much to explore and someday, some evening you would be sitting in the balcony of a wooden house rolled in a blanket with a coffee beside you. Living In the large green ground at the feet of some white snowy mountain. And there is a chance to it, as far as I know, there is a chance to everything.
But that is not the story, the story is that you can’t have all the stories at once.
You might be having a pleasant life and drinks with friends at your bar while the music runs across the walls and next evening you realize you can’t walk anymore. And then there is a last time you remember walking out of the kitchen and that seems to be the only time you did not walk enough it to be remembered forever. A last time when you go to the next city and then you realize that you would never ever be going more than few feet away from your room and it stops mattering if the snowy mountains or oceans or skies even exist or not. All you can see is the things out of your window and that’s it. The world becomes more and more insignificant with each next beat and in the end it shrinks so much that your own body becomes insignificant.
Death is a disappointment of ours from us that takes everything over someday.
And that’s how you die, little man. And nobody does this way all the times.”
“I would like you to leave the room Marry.”
“No, I apologize, let her stay, she is right. I should not have said that.”
Marry left the room.
Everyone remained silent for a while.
And then I hugged Bob. Ian hugged him as well.
The old man smiled.
“You guys might be tired. There are some blankets kept in the Almira there. Grab them and lay them on the floor. Have some sleep and then you could continue tomorrow.”
Ian brought the pillows and blankets from the Almira.