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Cul-de-sac, Vaxjo! - 02 Cul-de-sac, Vaxjo! - 02
by Thanos Kalamidas
2022-09-22 07:23:55
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Cul-de-sac, Vaxjo! - 01
Morning plans

I had one of those bad nights, entertaining nightmares mixed with wild imaginings and awoke around half eight, covers messed up and sweaty in the midst of another nightmare. Feeling moody and uneasy, I propped myself on my elbows, drew back the covers and stared the newly bought wooden ceiling lamp.

I was planning to spend at least another few minutes there trying to escape my last nightmare but what finally forced me to get up was the black and white beast who insisted to come under …cover! Ruby. A cat with a mission to ruin my mornings, my evenings and every other hour in between and despite every single scientific suggestion and reinsurance, I’m sure that she’s doing it intentionally.

I shuffled to the bathroom, of course followed by Ruby, and began my morning ritual avoiding seeing my morning face and bolding head in the mirror while brushing my teeth with Ruby careful watching if I was doing it right.

Then, keeping with my morning have-to-do-list, made my way to the kitchen for my insulin injection, test my blood-sugar levels, turn on the coffee machine and add a little milk in a cup, ready for my morning Nespresso. Of course, Ruby was following every step and she did try to share some of my coffee; successfully I have to add.

Nine on a Monday morning, with nowhere to go and very little to do while Ruby seemed busy tasting my bagel I had a quick look on the morning news online. The blessings of retirement decadence!

Six months more or less, since we had moved to this new place and I still had issues with my new country life. I tried to control them but oddly, I missed the city. Not the city or the city life per se but the strange reinsurance of being among the many. The noise, the traffic, the constant chatter. Here, the only constant chatter was coming from the tree leaves and the occasional truck carrying wood.

I also used to enjoy small walks in my old city neighbourhood but here possible small walk included forest, lakeside, shadows and that strange spooky feeling that there were odd and unknown eyes hiding everywhere, watching. All in the imagination of a spoiled urban brat but still causing anxiety. Obviously, I had some work to do with me.

Shaking these thoughts from my mind, I moved my day to my study. Sat on my also newly bought office-chair and tried to make a vague plan for the day: some writing, some drawing, perhaps a round of my cardio exercises, more writing, a shower, a small walk to… and the telephone ring jerked me out of my reverie.

I looked at the number and I didn’t recognize it so I remained still watching the telephone rigging and the number flashing on the screen. One more paranoia in the life of an immigrant. If it is from homeland, somebody is seriously ill or dying; if it is local, it is sales or a scam. It was neither, just Karl.

Karl, my very silent, classic music lover and sneaky smoker neighbour. “Stopped raining and I’m going for my morning smoke, do you want to bring your coffee and listen classic music?” A man of few and targeted even though often confusing for an outsider, words; Karl.

OK, fine, I admit it. I had a very selfish reason to join Karl in his morning sneaks and I did it as often as I could. Been a smoker myself for over thirty years but having quit the last six, there are days I miss the feeling, the smell, the act of inhaling smoke inside you. So, with Karl’s help I became a second hand smoker. Never missed the smell on my clothes and everything I tasted or ate – and that’s something I realized soon after I quitted, but the same time I missed the… smell. Doesn’t make sense and you would understand it only if you used to smoke. Yet here we were, Karl and I, well in our sixth decade inside his aged Opel, windows down in the wind of a rainy spring morning, both deep into a smoke cloud with Chopin blasting from the car radio. The real rock and roll and easy rider generation.  

We sat for a bit zipping our coffees and inhaling the smoke that was suffocating the small room when following his pattern, Karl opened the door left the cigarette drop on the asphalt floor of the parking lot, squashed it with his shoe and then picked up and put it in a paper tower he was carrying. When the ritual was over he said: “I’m going downtown to pick my new glasses, do you want to come for company?”

Oh, gosh; an adventure! Of course I said yes and we decided to start in an hour, leave the morning traffic pass. Nevertheless, he kept the best for last and he told me while walking back to our houses.

“We might meet my nephew, Lucas, and have lunch with him. He is a policeman, sergeant, new in the force and all that.”

Wow! Trip downtown, lunch in the centre and meeting a police sergeant. This was turning into Indiana Jones day minor the Pyramids.

Check Thanos Cul-de-sac, Växjö! blog, HERE!


      
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