Saturday, August 17, 2013

Vacation materials

Today my vacation begins. Things I brought:
John Updike, Rabbit Redux
John Williams, Stoner
A hangover
4 dresses, white, navy, black
A little melancholy
2 pairs of sandals
Bathing suits

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Venice in a bunch of haikus

Cars, robbers, rubbish,
Those things do not exist here,
Instead there's water.

Old architecture,
Under a gloomy sky,
Looks like Hollywood.

A biennale,
Shows us the world of today,
How we feel and think.

But if that's another
Video Installation,
I'm sorry. I can't.


When we saw Manet,
In the Palazzo Ducale,
A sigh; history.

Sunday, June 9, 2013


For the first time in ten years of living in America, I was brought back to the infamous little room at customs. The room I have seen many people disappear to, escorted by immigration officers, and not many return from.
Contents of the little room:
Two computers on two desks, with the officers sitting behind them.
In between them a folder holder. Which contained different folders in different colors. My passport was in one of them. I was seated on one of the chairs in the waiting area, which faced these two computers as if we were in a theatre. The performance was rather stern. One of the officers asked a woman from Venezuela multiple times whether she had ever applied for a visa. Her answer remained no. He kept asking.
The waiting room was filled with people, most of them under thirty years old. Most of them from Africa and South America. They had obviously been sitting there for a while.
After about fifteen minutes an officer came from another room and looked at the folder with my passport. He asked me some questions and disappeared again. The rest of the people in the waiting room were silent. Calm even. As if they had been expecting this. As if they woke up every morning knowing something like this would happen.
The officer came out again, asked me some more questions, handed me my passport, and sent me on my way.
The others might still be sitting there; I didn't see any of them behind me when I walked through the sliding doors.

Saturday, May 11, 2013


There is nothing in the world that makes me want to lounge around the house, and watch stupid television shows, than a writing deadline. 26 pages of 85 done. Aka not even halfway. Aka no reason to look for expensive sunglasses online. Yet.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Overheard at the Moses retirement home Part 2

Mr. Simon, when asked how he was feeling: I'm glad it's nice out so we can go outside, and that the food has gotten so much better since you all have been here. (It is doubtful the food was any different. Maybe he was just distracted.)

A lady whose name I do not remember: I was once in a school play. I played the grandma of two children, but the grandma was dead, so I actually played a photograph of the grandmother. The entire time I had a frame around my upper body. In another play I was a music box. I sat in a box and when someone opened it I sang a song. (After this story she sang a song. It was in Romanian, so I'm not sure what it was about.)
There were also two men in the group that always did everything together. When there was a photography assignment they did it in a duo. They sat next to each other when we made drawings. They were roommates, so presumably they also slept next to each other. They barely spoke, as if they had become one and the same person.

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Overheard at the Moses Rosen retirement home, Bucharest

Mr. Pompiliu, 90: A man knows he's old when he loved all the girls, and none of them love him.
(Which was not entirely true. My roommate, a Romanian girl from Cluj, found him incredibly sexy.)
On our last day he said: Although saying goodbye is salty from the tears, may the coffee be sweet.

Mrs. Eva, age unknown: What is this? I don't know who I drink. (She was drinking watered down coffee. She did not believe this.)
Mrs. Adelanou, 80 something about a drawing in the hallway: It says mr. Simon's name on this, but he did not do this drawing. Everybody lies around here. I shall ask someone to erase his name from the drawing. It's just not right.

Mrs. Alenanou about Mrs. Eva's drawing picturing two dogs sniffing each other's behind with the title 'irresistable attraction' : You are obsessed with sex. Everything is always about sex with you.
Mr. Marius about his drawing with the assignment 'your name': I drew a house, because domesticity is very important to me. It is a house in the middle of the forrest, the wilderness. There is a path between this house and the forrest, that leads to the front door.

Mrs. Adelanou: I think people should reconsider communism.
When she gave me an orange: Please, put the orange in your bag. Otherwise they'll wonder where you got it from.
Mrs. Silvianu, 80s, to Mara, 19: You should never wear blue, it's bad luck. And you should take some blonde highlights. They'll make you look years younger.

Mrs. Medi, 104 years old, and a painter: I never really thought so much about what I would do with my life. I never made any decisions. I just waited to see what would happen. I still don't see myself as a real painter. I don't think I am.
Mrs. Odil, 80s, who changes her pink and purple outfits four times a day: My daughter lives in Vienna with her engineer husband. One day he bought her a red mercedes sports car. When I came to visit she drove me around in it.
Mrs. Eva: I translated avant garde Hungarian poetry. I can't stand the idiots here. Most of them are idiots.

Monday, February 11, 2013


If skin could talk we would never hear the end of it.
Lived in, damaged, healed, soft, flexible with a smile, stark with an eyebrow.
Eyes lit up thinking of a little lamb fed by hand until it was fully grown.
Feet up on a balcony under a red roof.
Something about an old school friend who had found you from across the globe.
Painful, confident steps to a stove, and some small flowers in a vase.
French television stewing in the background.
Combs carefully holding a life together.
An ordinary day, except for a familiar voice on my voicemail.
What do you call squirrels again in Dutch?
Where do I drop these things off? I have some socks they could use.
We could order something from the Vietnamese place.
A click. The voice is gone.
There are visitors coming.