Monday, 16 November 2015


Hello there!

If you're reading this message it means you've found the bottle I put it in, so please, please dispose of the bottle responsibly. Respect and cherish our bounteous Mother Earth, even if you think nobody is watching.

I'm sorry it's a plastic bottle, but I had no choice, owing to a certain person's bad karma. I write those words more in sorrow than in anger, having done a lot of work on addressing my anger issues. I was looking forward to addressing my sorrow issues in a forthcoming series of grief workshops at a sacred site in Ibiza, but now I've missed them, and I'm stranded here, all because a certain person is deluded by ego-consciousness, and also totally horrible.

But here's the exciting part! We've all heard stories about people finding a message in a bottle that reveals the location of buried treasure, which is unearthed after an arduous quest. And it's true! You can find the treasure! The arduous quest you must undertake is the journey to rescue me from this island. And guess what? The treasure lies within your own heart! It is the wealth of enlightenment, bestowed upon anyone who gains merit by rescuing a marooned person who is in pretty bad shape, holistically, from being forced to drink mass-produced water in plastic bottles.

Actually, the quest won't be too arduous. The co-ordinates of the island are on the back of this note, obtained from the GPS on my iPhone before a certain person drained the battery by watching Netflix while I was asleep. But it's pretty close to the route our cruise ship was taking when the crew marooned us. The crew, I must point out, not the passengers. The feisty seniors who signed up for my course, 'Vibrant Wellness for the Young at Heart', adored me. I'm sure their numbers would have reached double figures eventually, despite one of them unfortunately passing away during a Bikram Yoga session, and if the crew hadn't thrown me overboard. Me, and Ramona, the young shipboard entertainer who had so captivated me upon embarkation, and who became my close companion, and who has now shattered the delicate cornucopia of fathomless magic that was my heart.

I should have listened to the crew, instead of urging them to join the mindfulness seminars I began hosting in their recreation area after I found I would be living among them, rather than in the private cabin I'd been promised by the agent who booked me on the cruise. My subsequent inability to contact him compromised my aura, and I reacted badly to the crew's insistence that Ramona was a notorious slut (their words) who frequented cruise ships in order to seduce and deceive "dumb old dudes". The animosity was exacerbated by my continued refusal to believe that Ramona was, indeed, a lying, scheming bitch (my words).

To be fair, the crew were pretty drunk the night they cast us adrift in a lifeboat. They were not unmerciful, in their unruly way, and gave us some basic provisions. My request for a vegan option resulted in a large cheese being thrown at me, and I believe my pleas for glass-bottled Hawaiian volcanic water would not have been rebuffed so scornfully if Ramona (who was also drunk) had not begun fighting with several crew members, and demanding a supply of meat-based meals. This finally snapped the patience of the crew, who flung some tins of corned beef into the boat, and dropped it precipitously into the water, to the accompaniment of much boisterous singing. Interestingly, I recognised some of the tunes (if not the words) from a World Folk, Traditional and Mythopoeic Music Festival I attended in Wales last year.

We have now been on this island for three weeks. Relations with Ramona are not good. The cheese has run out. Fish are plentiful, but revolting. The water (ugh!) is running low. Ramona craves meat, but we have been unable to catch any monkeys. They have proved to be wily adversaries, who can knock you clean out with a well-aimed coconut, and appear to enjoy doing so.

Please come as soon as you can, or at least send help. I'm pretty sure Ramona is planning to eat me.

Darius Stallybrass,
Qualified Holistic Healer and Wellbeing Therapist. Group rates available.