It is difficult to track down the road-maker.
Word has it that there is very little that gives away his presence, especially when he is at work.
He works quietly and swiftly, and you know he's been there only after he is long gone, leaving behind a trail of new roads where none existed before, perhaps to make up for the old roads that disappeared as if the earth had swallowed them up in the dead of the night.
It was the end of the year 2012, and the world had not met its end, so some of us resuscitated long-forgotten dreams. And now we wanted to seek out the road-maker so he could build us new paths to traverse in the new year.
Someone said they had spotted him at the town's inn the evening before, enjoying a drink and making merry. We hurried towards the inn but, as we had half-expected, the inn was closed and we learnt that the innkeeper had set out to travel the world, following new paths no doubt laid by the road-maker.
Someone else said the road-maker was last seen by the edge of the river, erecting a bridge across the waters to the city. We rushed to the river bank only to see a newly-laid bridge disappearing before our very eyes, and a glimpse of the road-maker disappearing into the city lights yonder.
Our search for the road-maker was fruitless, nevertheless we decided to plod on towards the city following well-trodden paths. This was in early 2013. And looking back now, we can safely say it has turned out to be a year of adventures and discoveries. We stuck to established paths at first, then allowed ourselves to meander a bit and stumbled upon hidden routes; the more adventurous among us blazed new trails, some of us ran into dead ends and had to retrace our steps and start all over again.
The funny part was that in all this we had forgotten all about the road-maker. So when he approached our table at the newest pub in the city, where we had gathered for an evening of celebration on the last day of 2013, and greeted us, we were more than a bit startled.
He apologised for the delay but stressed his was not to simply unfurl new paths at our feet when we stood still. His was to help keep the momentum going.
And that is how when dawn broke over the new year this time, we found ourselves on new paths paved by the road-maker. And we find he also has thrown in a few new dreams for good measure.