So we go to the theatre. We watch a modern version of “Orpheus” and drink vine (it is the theatre where you have a little table in front of you where to put wine while you are watching the play). Then we drink one beer outside and go to my place. We speak about Orpheus, Japan earthquake, Milton Erickson’s hypnotising techniques and “The Hijacker’s Guide to the Galaxy”. Then we make love for about two hours and – ach, I almost forgot, Andre also fixed my stereo system. Then the parking is about to close at 1am and he leaves.
The Beer Belly guy took Amanda to the Thron Legacy 3D and they both liked it. So the next date is walking along the river in two weeks (TBB goes to some business trip). I always admired people who have so much patience when exploring the other human being. How can you wait one month before having the first kiss? Or two weeks before looking in the eyes of somebody you are agonising to know better? It is not only about sex. I want to research. I want to run through the minefield. I want to smother the Olympic fire. I want to reach the end of the desert. That is why I am so bored, because I am too impatient.
At that moment an sms from Andre arrives. He suggests theatre on Saturday. Cool! I always wanted to have someone with whom I can go to the theatre, to Opera, to dinner parties and royal receptions. This is the world where I should belong.
Are you seeing someone? Amanda asks.
Yes, I am. I say. Actually I am in love.
Why did I say that?
The man’s name is Andre and he is manager in a bank. He also likes arts and writing and also some esoteric stuff. He has glasses and is small, but I am small too. He is cynical manager, the one who says that all management in his bank is crap and who does not believe that everyone will get rewarded for what he is doing like Billy. (I feel revenged) He goes to Laos or Thailand or Cuba. He is a gadget freak.
What is you favourite German word? He asks.
Die Möhre (small carrots).
My favorite word is doch, he says.
I like how you can use it – doch, doch.
That I can not answer right now, I have to think. At the same time the party is over and we go outside, on the street. He asks if I fancy a lift and I agree. We slide through the dark pre-spring city in his blue Audi and speak about neuro linguistic programming. It is predetermined that we will have a date, so we exchange our business cards.
I go to the garden party of Alma. Alma is good, smart and beautiful – it is a rare combination in one person, and in particular in one woman. She reminds me of my Russian godmother. I wish I could be like her one day, enwrapped in harmony and forgiveness like in a big warm glove. Will this day ever come? Will I be able not to lose myself in hours, seconds, semicolons and newspaper clippings?
Spring is coming and the garden party is a blast. It is not really in the garden, as nothing is there yet, just some green grass and rose stems, but everybody is excited, people walk in circles and speak about spring. Spring turns the air in the city into some kind of drug. I also walk around “the garden”, dash from one corner to another with my cigarette and wine glass and with every circle I am getting more and more turned on. Suddenly Alma appears in the doorway and asks everyone inside to eat the carrot cake. I am so excited that I can not control myself anymore – Reiner, Schmeiner, I forgot all the recent melancholies and am driven by an irresistible unbearable lightness of a pre-spring evening. I dart to Alma, not seeing anything in my way and almost crush a man who is also sprinting from the other corner of “the garden”. He must be as lost and crazy as me.
I ask Lars, how is it going with the waitress, but he is not very talkative about her. He just says abruptly that she is working at nights and that is hard for them to find the time to meet. I have a tiny Schadenfreude about her, followed by an instant sharp, self-punishing regret about it – maybe that waitress could be my best friend if I knew her. Maybe she is a student from another country who is profound and deep and not boring and friendly and at the same time fascinatingly different. Could be that she is someone I always wanted to meet, my soulmate, my imaginary sister (my real sister is a civil servant whose biggest satisfaction in life is to work for the state), my unknown twin. I am dying to ask him, what is she exactly doing apart from serving tables, how did they meet, where exactly does she work, etc. But I sense that he is angry about even mentioning her name. Could be that he has invented her? Sometimes I suspect Lars inventing his many girlfriends, but on the other hand I am inventing people too.
I go to Munich, together with Billy. There is a two-day conference about the subject our corporation is working on, we don’t have to write anything about it, but to get the “contacts”, Billy says. That means organisers are paying. And so we sit all the day in the conference, exchanging business cards with everyone we meet during the coffee breaks.
I love Munich. It has big wide boulevards where the wind blows abundantly, oak trees in the parks and the streets of bookshops and students.
In the evening I lie to Billy that I have to meet an old friend of mine and sneak out from the conference buffet. We are in the centre and I walk down by the big alley and watch people buying oranges. Then I go to the Mandarin Oriental and take the elevator to the roof terrace. I have been here once with my mum. It is quiet and expensive, people are showing off, but I don’t mind. I love luxury. Luxury fills my veins with unlived memories, it oozes scent of a parallel life that runs somewhere nearby – in paradise.
I order a mohito, already the second one. When I get a bill, it is written in the bottom: You were served by Reiner.
Amanda has met the beer belly guy. She wanted to meet him two days ago, but then he was suddenly busy (another argument he could be married). So now it finally happened.
No, he is not married – at least he says so. His beer belly is not so bad also after all. And he said that he is working out. Yet the problem now is the age – she thinks he is too old for her.
How old is he? I ask. I don’t know, she says. I did not ask. Then why do you think he is too old? We look at the pictures together. He looks ok, yet there is something from Hans B. in him. Maybe it is the beard. Or the glasses. Definitely not the beer belly though.
So what is the plan? The plan is to go to the movies next week. That sounds cool, I say. Yes, that is cool, Amanda replies.