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Stories from New York

Ιουλίου 11, 2017

 

 

 

 

1. Είμαι σε τόπο πού έχει πολλά και πολύ ψηλά κτίρια, πολλά πλάσματα, πολλά πράγματα να κάνεις-αν έχεις τα ανάλογα ριάλια. Μυρίζουν και οι υπόνομοι. Κάτι Σαν μυρωδιά βραστού βόθρου. Και μου έδωσε μέχρι εδώ η βρωμιά τής αλητείας πού κυκλοφόρησε στο νησί. Για ένα άνθρωπο πού τον ζηλεύει όλο το νησί. Και είπα πως αν ήταν άλλες οί συνθήκες μου αυτό θα ήταν αρκετό να με έκανε να μην ξαναπατήσω στο κωλονήσι.

Εν τω μεταξύ, μαθαίνω δε λύθηκε ακόμη ε; Ίσως αύριο;

(Αναφορικά με τις βρωμιές για τον Στέλιο Χατζηιωάννου, εδώ )

 

2.  So, enough of uptown’s smelly glitter. In fact you could even call it the closest thing to Donald, his tower is just around the corner.

Then even the camera got tired of snapping every single view of the famous skyline. The sky turned blue today. We had a downpour yesterday, and you could see the rain coming, covering skyscraper after skyscraper camouflaging them with a deep grey colour, and then splashing on you with all the heaven’s might.

So, time to see closer at home, and you could be forgiven for mistaking Greenwich Village with London, after all there had to be some similarity. Then it was the mingling of cultures in the great Little Italy, busy, but somehow less gay than the original, together with the next bunch of people who pushed the country forward, it was the China Town.

You were a bit unsure about the food street vendors on Broadway but still it all looked natural and safe. And people, so many people.

The parks were busy with younger people enjoying the sunshine, either for them or their kids. They too looked happy. In fact, you get to meet one of these young people, the precious daughter of an ancient friend.

In a way, I am lucky to study medicine in the Bronx, she says.

You learn so many more things, since you have to deal with bad cases, severe cases of people not wanting or not affording to take care of themselves. These people live in places that are literally deserts, urban deserts, she says, so sickness and decay are commonplace.

But still one country, holding itself together, leading the world in many ways. And many directions.

3. I have to be honest. While I was looking at the impressive 4th of July fireworks over the East River, I had some bad thoughts crossing my mind. I like and usually look forward to new experiences. Even unpleasant experiences – preferably from a safe distance. Safe enough for me, my family and people I care about. Well, if that was secured, how about having a terrorist attack during an iconic event in a great city? A terrorist attack during the July 4th fireworks perhaps? How would the people react? What about the authorities? Would the tight security vissible everywhere in the big smelly city limit the victims and the consequences of the attack? Would there be panic and further casualties?

And would there be a reason or a result coming out from this act?

My daughter was too excited at the beginning and then too tired from the lights the smoke and the crowds. So the bad thoughts reached nowhere on that night.

Today we visited Ground Zero. I saw the watery constructions that replaced the collapsed towers, I saw the names of the victims I saw the great work done around the site for people to remember and honour. I saw the new tower too, lost in the angry July clowds which got us soaking wet.

And then it was the memorabilia, the photographs, the news reports. And I remembered the shock I felt that afternoon listening to Neophytos on radio Astra describing the events. And all the rage came back to my mind regarding the sick, but more accurately fanatical minds that planned that attack.

And at that moment the thoughts of the other night came back to mind. And promptly came to rest: there can be no excuse for terrorism, whatever the stakes.

There are policy implications to this. Liberties might have to be limited in order to deal with real or even imaginary threats of terrorism.

Sad but necessary.

Sometimes things have to be no-no. Absolutely.

4. Last engagement on the big city. Maria’s friend from a couple of lives before. Pre war childhood friends from a place out of bounds for most of their lives.

Came to the country to study, never returned.

Not much time to catch up on what happened in the big meantime. A few general things, a little about people they both knew and what happened to them, a little on their new president, a little on our little island and the new adventures is now venturing to.

And then goodbyes. And a hug. And then another hug.

And at that moment all my cynicism went away, and I thought my eyes were wet.

Because some things in life can be beautiful.

5.

Εικονικά, αλλά και πάντως κυριολεκτικά, είναι πια έτοιμοι να πετάξουν. Δεν ξέρω αν είναι καλή ιδέα να πάμε ξανά μαζί τους πολυήμερες διακοπές (αυτό, να μου το θυμίσετε). Τα ενδιαφέροντα είναι πλεον ορατά και διαφορετικά. Οι ρυθμοί και η διάθεση το ίδιο.

Δεν χαλιούνται να ξεκόβουν, δεν διστάζουν να προχωρήσουν μόνοι, δεν φοβούνται να τολμήσουν, δεν τρομάζουμε στην ιδέα αν το κάνουν.

Ίσως και να *πρέπει* να το κάνουν και να τους αφήσουμε.

Άλλωστε, όσο νωρίτερα μάθουν να ελέγχουν και να γεμίζουν τη ζωή τους, τόσο το καλύτερο.

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