Julio the Explorer

boat

Ā© The Storyteller’s Abode

Stranded on a sandbar, Julio pointed to the rocks ahead of him and loudly declared, “I claim this land in the name of Philip the First, King of Portugal.”

Some said he was drunk. Some said he was mad. The children pointed at him and laughed, making up silly and insulting rhymes about Crazy Julio.

“I don’t care what you think. I claim this land. It is mine. King Philip will honor me.”

“King Philip has been dead for over four-hundred years.”

“To you maybe little one, but he lives for me.”

Julio jumped from his boat with a small Portuguese flag in his hand. “I shall plant this here in honor of Philip and Portugal.”

The children laughed and ran away. They’d like to have come back later to steal the flag, but it really was his estate. His family had owned the land in California for generations. Julio was neither drunk nor mad. He just liked to have fun and to entertain the children.

I wrote this for the FFfAW Challenge for Week of July 25, 2017. The idea is to use the photo above to prompt the writing of a piece of flash fiction between 100 and 175 words long with 150 words being the ideal. My word count is 166.

To read more stories based on the prompt, go to InLinkz.com.

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29 thoughts on “Julio the Explorer

  1. It may seem cute and humorous and harmless to us as we view it from our present safe distance, but the short-sighted arrogance that Julio was reenacting is not a joking matter. If the land in question had been owned already by another powerful civilization, his action could presage war. If the civilization were less powerful, it could presage massacre and oppression. But did the Julios of the world ever respect the places they claimed sufficiently to investigate prior existing land claims or historical ones? They did not, and thus ensued horrendous passages of human history and wholesale violation of what have now begun to be recognized as human rights (though even this exalted notion has been abused).

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    • I hadn’t really evaluated that aspect of my wee tale, PL. Yes, I supposed someone sensitive to colonial history could be offended, but that certainly wasn’t my intent. Julio was “conquering” his own land, perhaps making fun of those who used to conquer the land of others. Yes, the real history is no fun at all, but it’s possible Julio’s own ancestors suffered at the hands of colonists.

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