Showing posts from January, 2010

Trapped in Hope

"We all live in a house on fire, no fire department to call; no way out, just the upstairs window to look out of while the fire burns the house down with us trapped, locked in it” Tennessee Williams “There was a power outage at a department store yesterday. Twenty people were trapped on the escalators.” Stephen Wright “People are trapped in history and history is trapped in them.” James Arthur Baldwin “Here we are, trapped in the amber of the moment. There is no why.” Kurt Vonnegut, Jr. “No man knows when his hour will come; As fish are caught in a cruel net, or birds are taken in a snare, so men are trapped by evil times that fall unexpectedly upon them” The Bible “Worry compounds the futility of being trapped on a dead-end street. Thinking opens new avenues.” Cullen Hightower “Sometimes I feel that I'm a lesbian trapped in a man's body - which actually works out pretty well” Author Unknown “With relish and delight, you continually bite at the ba

Dutch Mills

Was it meant to be that way, to invariably fall in the arms of a new city only deep in the night? In the small hours of Monday I stepped out of the train station in the center of Rotterdam . She shuddered at my sudden appearance and defensively grabbed my throat with a bitterly cold hand. I pulled my collar high around the neck, squinted into the wind then walked north in search of a taxi. She relaxed and apologetically let go. "You're late", she said under her breath, vapor rolling with her words and disappearing instantly. Remnants of Christmas ornaments and lights shined and blinked for no one but me as the snow covered sidewalks were left completely deserted. Whoever celebrated here were gone, hiding within the comfort of quaint small apartments. If they were sleepless tonight and looked from behind their wide un-curtained windows to the streets below, they would see the shivering shadows of naked trees and the hunched figure of a lonely traveler seeking a warm bed.


I do not sleep well on the night before I travel and the last hours before an imminent departure are always restless. Packing for a midwinter trip is knotty as there are more things to take and to forget. This time I'm leaving the warmth of an unusually mild winter with absurdly beautiful weather (today: clear skies and 24ÂșC) to higher latitudes and subzero temperatures. Out of Tartous in the morning and two taxis, two planes and a train later, it'll be past midnight in some small room of a big hotel in a strange city. I will be back at the end of the week, hopefully with a  new story to tell.