Musings in a foreign city – Bergen   1 comment

I am enjoying the provocations of loneliness and solitude. The spaces in the city give my heart the space for sorrow to be emptied. I wish to be in your arms…but I know it is not you I want. I want my lovefulness back. I want you to touch my hair and kiss them. I want you to kiss my ears and make my every sound yours. I want you to break my heart a final time so that it can be free of this fear of heartbreak forever. I want you to give me your arms and be my saving grace.

It is indescribable the amount of love I feel for Europe. This continent has its strings weaved into my heart in mysterious ways. I worked 4 years in various jobs I didn’t enjoy just to receive these 12 days of Europe in Bergen, Norway. Since adolescence I was fascinated by France as much as girls my age were fascinated by boys. As I walked the cobblestoned streets in my tick-tocking boots, I thanked this part of earth with my every step for bringing me here. There is an insanity about love, and that is exactly what Europe is for me. I work in this field called IT which I feel like quitting every now and then owing to office politics, disheartening managers, and its attitude of applauding selfishness above communal growth. And yet I stuck to it just to be rewarded these 12 days. In these 12 days I have lived 12 lifetimes. The pleasure of sharing my Indianness with a family from here, the joy of walking with an unknown woman guiding me to my apartment without us ever knowing each other’s names is an experience that builds itself in a zone of exhilaration. Everyday my gratitude deepens… As I chat with fellow colleagues about the demerits of Indian men, the near impossibility of having a love child in an Indian society, I find a deeper connect with these women to whom I look and sound foreign but who in turn seem known. I want to freeze-frame the empty streets near the railway station into my camera…no wonder this city has so many artists – every alternate shop near my hotel is an art studio. Sometimes the art is bizarre, sometimes chalky images of the landscapes around. Maybe they too cannot get over the pleasant spaciousness of this city like me. I discover the statue of Ole Bull, the violinist who encouraged Edvard Grieg, another musical prodigy late in the 1800s. His secret marriage with a woman 40 years younger to him intrigues me as much as the appreciation for his clear violin renditions. I wish they have a record of this man who could fall in love and have the courage to have a daughter at that age. The insanity of love.

Amid the ebb and tide of loneliness and solitude brought about by this loony place, I discover that my heart is broken. So much time has passed that I have lost track of who broke it. Maybe it was an ex-lover from Europe, or maybe the initial stirrings were that of my dad for having broken my heart when he didn’t want or need my opinion on something. I listen to Norah Jones incessantly on a loop. I discover her latest release from an album called Little Broken Hearts. Dots connect themselves when left to move on their own.

The nightingale sings the grief in my heart. I am enjoying these provocations. I cry and write a letter to a man who feels like a lover but is miles away from being so. One that I will never send to him. I write to him every week. Like carving a statue that was never meant to see the light of the day. I am fooling the words that they will bear sunshine. One sided love is unbearable whatever the odds. Especially when you are falling in it. I see no birds here in Bergen. I hear no birds. Maybe they are all travelling like me to distant lands to gather back pieces of their hearts. I hope they come back whole and rejuvenated. Perhaps with a new love even. J’espère.

The endless maze of streets that my mind finds hard to comprehend. My feet ache so badly that now they have stopped talking to me.

It is past midnight. I cajole my feet with a balm made from some hauntingly sweet spice from Africa. They cry. I hold them near and cradle them. I sing them Norah’s traveller song. Another day has gone. Soon this solitude will end. There is no attachment this time. I am playing it safe. I know this man called Europe is going to betray me. I grieve it before it happens. It is like a child being aborted that you spent so many months nurturing. It feels like a life is going to a dark place where there is only uncertainty. I pray silently that there is a man reading this who feels my ache, this umbilical pull towards Europe and becomes that space shuttle that will promise me eternity here. Maybe other planets can wait. With cities like Bergen, there is no chance another planet can seem so enticing. Maybe someone out there recognizes this yearning for our own home even as we stay in it and have hence stayed away. Let them be so. There are still so many layers of beauty this virgin earth has.

I am on Day 6 and half of my stay is done. I have tried to live each day like a new book being written hastily. By next week this time I’ll be in what feels like foster home after this. I intend to find oneness with this place that I so yearn for. My very need, I wish, turn into my savior and release me from it. That is what I wish from my soul. No love can come close to what i feel for Europe, what I feel for this land. I am still sucked into the womb of this love and am reluctant to move out. May the northern lights lift this spell. I look up at the magnetic sky. Goodbye.

Advertisements

Posted March 29, 2012 by Deepti G Gujar in articles, wanderlust

One response to “Musings in a foreign city – Bergen

Subscribe to comments with RSS.

  1. Hey D,

    That’s why I always think you should be a travel writer…You love traveling and you love writing…and moreover, you are good at it 🙂

    …and I completely disagree with your line that implies girls were fascinated by boys. Gaah…then why are we all struggling 😛

    – V

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: