Centre of Europe: life on hold / in perspective


A journey is never about taking pictures and sight-seeing churches – the only real value of traveling is people and experiences. That, and being able to be the full of herself fucker, who says “Yeah, last time I was in Romania..” and talk a lot about wild dogs with maps on their backs. It’s called “Being Cool 101”, people – google it.

We have a thing for getting lost and love for small towns. In Będzin, there is a plan to make a political party out of short guys. That Russian guy says I am krasivaya, so I walk around the town, reminding myself, that when in trouble, I have to look as pregnant as I can. Discussing tips on how to sit on the lap of the politician.

Near Ostrava Czech policemen stop us, because it is not ok to hitchhike on highway. J. uses the power of Polish and tries to sell me as a slave to the great nation of the Czechia, but policemen do not see me as a valid gift, and give me a fine instead. They also give us a ride, we laugh a lot, but after they leave us in a deadend hitching place, where we wait for two hours in the hot sun, we kinda stop laughing. Some metalhead stops and brings us to the train station, J. takes pictures on the naked levitating lady, some guy: a) Tries to sell us weed b) Asks for sex, c) Simply likes to touch himself while speaking Czech — I am not sure which is the right answer. Best friend I ever had.

The first thing we do in Brno is, of course, get lost again. All the way to the wrong direction, then 30 stops back. There is a guy with a sword and lady with beautifully chocolate skin on the tram. The driver laughs at us, we wave as he leaves us in the stop. There are others, going to the fest, and no buses. It is only 10 kilometers, we laugh. It is only 11 pm, and the festival will not start without us. The ultimate guide of not stressing out says, that if you can not do something about this problem of yours, find the alternative way to do what you want, or change the goal. So I start to believe, that the Hradby Samoty is only a non-existent concept, because the main thing was always, in fact, the road. The oldest taxi driver in Brno, a lovely 80-year-old hears, that there is a group of five, seeking to get into the castle, and rescues us. He does not look at the road, and he does not stop talking, while some politicians from the screen promise us lands and riches.

We stand in a circle in front of the castle with our new Czech-Slovakian friends, and a bottle together with a smoke makes its way around, and that is a sign of the end of one chapter and beginning of another.

Hradby Samoty was the goal of the trip, and it will get its own text a bit later. Therefore, here is a picture from there as a compensation:hrad-s-cb

Bratislava was supposed to be the last point. But when I was standing on the castle hill alone at night, I understood, that show must go on. The friendly Caravelle left with the rest of Lithuania, and I was there, with a bag, which was my home now. My teens went with thinking, what all you need is your backpack, and in my backpack there was way more of everything, than I need. The concept of home is only in your head.

My home was the bench in Vienna, which I chose after visiting some bar, where Placebo was playing, and a girl wished, that her boyfriend had more tattoos. My home was the park I remember from 8 years ago, where we were alternative and young.

My home was student dorm in Brno, which had little chairs and little tables and I was a little too drunk to find it from the first time.

My home was a room, which smells like cigarettes and hookers, to which you pay extra for not using a condom. That is, because you don’t believe in STIs, and love Jesus a lot. The lady says, that the guy, who was using the room before, was there for only an hour. We play the game of “If you were a hooker, which bed would you use?”. I have never felt such intense presence of invisible people before.

My home was trains and buses, cars and trams, my family was all those people.

Hanging out with the great Slovakians from the festival, who were the worst guides ever, in a sense of “So, this is like, the main street of Bratislava?” “Not sure, you should check in the Tourist info center”. Parks and hipster bar with a view to the castle, discussing, who is gay, who dresses well, who has worse politicians.

And we declare most of Bratislava ours. That is my spot. That’s also my spot. This is my hostel. My fountain. My bridge. My bar. The feeling of reigning this land. The feeling that this town is, in fact, slavic version of Vilnius. Constant deja vu – the street and the river, sovietica and posh luxury. The hipsters and old ladies with the standart melody on their Nokia. Parks and parties with go-go dancers. I went through 1/3 of Europe just to be back at home. And when you start to feel this, it is time to move on.

When traveling, at some point I start to play a game of “What kind of felling is that?” Am I hungry? Sad? Drunk? In love? Or is it just that I slept for two hours on a bench in Vienna, and then talked all night with local extravaganza, their dogs and fellow travellers. That old punk with offbeat vibe, who is chaste for 12 years, after his then 19-year-old gothic girlfriend left him because of drugs. That Italian boy, who just finished high school, tool his bike and, without saying anything to his parents, went to the trip, which mostly consist visiting museums. Or that woman, who swims naked in the fountain of my long-lost park, while a group of Asian girls applaud her.

What kind of feeling is this, you ask?

It is pure, clean, unquestionable happiness.


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