World Council will ensure that all world citizens will have their basic needs of food, water, shelter, health and education meet. Education will differ greatly from the current system of regurgitating facts under pressure of exams. It will be modelled on the Steiner and Montessori systems where children will have their creativity and thirst for knowledge ignited. Their talents and skills will be encouraged with competitiveness being rapidly phased out.

Nancy, our IT wiz, is a kiwi who used to work in child care and much as she loves kids it confirmed that she didn’t want the 24/7 responsibility of bringing up her own! Dan has steely grey curly hair with a gentle face for a man who’s seen too much. Stella his wife is most relieved that we keep him busy as she is used to the life she established after he’d worked such long hours for decades. Retirement often means ex-cops are under foot so to have him busy allows her to continue with the lifestyle she was used to. Bingo with the girls, grandkids twice a week etc.

If we really need a confidential space my secret garden is perfect. Although I live in a tiny home on wheels, THOW, I’ve found the perfect little block by the river and only ten minutes walk from the ocean. I can hear the pounding of the waves at night and smell that fresh salt air! I’ve surrounded my space with a hedge and only the corner of an old shed is visible to the inquisitive. That shed is deceiving as it houses a spacious spare room with on-suite and kitchenette just in case anyone needs to stay over. And this means that the team never had any reason to enter my sacred space, I am completely private.

My garden space is decorated from art works I collected on my travels … the holy cow, the metal lilies, large bright artworks from the street artists of Asia. It’s colourful but peaceful .. a happy healing space with a large table readily seating a dozen. This means I can use one end for my outdoor office without needing to clear the other end every time we meet. There is also a large fire pit for when we have workshops or entertain because I understand the value of working and playing hard. Plus it’s ideal for debriefing and team bonding.

Reg and Ray, one had had a very senior hush hush position but had retired early when he realised the system was the problem, not the solution. Their adopted kids are Sunbeam and Lazer, yes they actually named their kids that! One is from Korea and the other Thai as the boys, like me, have a deep fondness for Asia and they wanted to support those communities in particular.

Sunbeam is in the last year of her mechanic apprenticeship and her real passion is to ‘repair’ any broken thing. But more about her and Scruff my trusty blue heeler [dog] later.

third 500 word fiction