Friday, January 30, 2009

myth (iv) - six mythical episodes

i rarely saw eva tüting downtown lüneburg. the only place I would ever see her was at school. and I would make the most of it. as me, she would also take the bus in the winter, but ride a bike in the summer. sure enough, i rapidly found out which bike was hers, and i would always put mine only a row away from hers (there was quite a big bike parking lot at my school), sometimes even on the same row. after school, i would sometimes wait for her to go. our path “together” was only around 300 m, then she took a right, while i went straight ahead. approaching summer time, once again i saw her after school. she was wearing her famous blue dress with white flowers. and i made a decision… i would stalk her a little bit! i let her go a little but in front of me, then i left school to. i drove a little behind her, but always faster (i just wouldn’t slow down), so very soon i had passed her. i then slowed down a little, cycled another 1,5 km of her path, and waited for her at the corner of munstermannskamp and uelzener str. there, she took a right, and i watched her drive away. then i took a left and went home. that day, i drove a total of 9 km home, a full kilometer longer than normal. or, one can say, only one km longer. because it was totally worth it; the image of eva riding a bike, especially in that dress, with her dark blond reddish wusch hair in the wind, and the dress only showing her beautiful feet… it was so worth it that i repeated this quite a few times after that day. and i’m very sure she never noticed – they never did…
two years before this spring of 93, i had been in love with anja. i would see her in the city occasionally, so i was always alert to the possibility. but with eva, it never happened. i knew there was a possibility, after all she did go to the music school. but not on a day i would be there, seemingly. anyway, my heart almost stopped once, almost in the summer, when i spottet her in the grosse bäckerstrasse. i was on the way to saxophone class, and there she was – also in a typical outfit of hers, green jeans and a grey t-shirt. i had no reaction – i was late to class and almost walking away, but then i went back – and she had vanished, nowhere to be found. still, i remember that episode quite well.
in the beginning of the summer, i went to a concert where leo’s “ensemble of old music” performed. actually, it wasn’t leo’s, it was reinhard tüting’s, eva’s father and leo’s viola da gamba teacher. the performance was in kloster lüne, a very old and small chapel right outside of lüneburg, which belonged to a monastery complex. her hair was getting longer at that time, just beautiful and perfect hair, almost shoulder-long now. herr tüting even asked me to activate and deactivate the recorder, since they were taping the concert. so i sat in the first row, and even though i was so near, it was almost impossible to take my eyes off of her. fresh memories of the magical moments in the musikschule open day came alive, and the music – the music was wonderfully old, in this little, old chapel. memorable evening, to say the least. and at recess, i even mingled with the musicians (since leo was back there, at that time he was 13 years old) and saw her then. don’t quite remember what she was wearing, though. but still a magical memory.
finally, a few days later, we went to her city of deutsch-evern, where there would be a concert. now, i had been to deutsch-evern earlier that year to visit a school friend immo and play tennis with him. he and heidje, another school colleague, where next door neighbors, not too far away from where eva lived and her parents still live. i was very aware of the fact that i was in deutsch-evern, and was very alert – but i didn’t see eva. this time i would, for sure. and, there she was. black and white striped summer sweater, brownish jeans, lovely as ever, beautiful is not even word enough. this time, she had her hair tied up to a pony tail, a style that i had come to appreciate a lot since jana in 1990. i really can’t explain this infatuation i had for eva, but i’d never looked at anyone that way, and i never have since. meaning that this beauty, and this totally includes her way of being, behavior, smile… this beauty is something out of this world. i mean, i’m quite sure that even today i would find her to be a gorgeous woman… you never know, just a hinch.
in light of all that i have written about eva, this piece of story seems to me the most… i don’t know… mystical? no, but, really strange. as i think is clear, i never got to know eva, and she didn’t even know who i was. she studied in a class with bärchen, my first female best friend, and jana, my first adolescent love story (which will be told one of these days). they were best friends and, like me, christians in the adventist church. that year, although i was still 15, i would already attend the youth meetings of our church, and so would they. one day, though, i went to another town to listen to a speaker we all liked in our family; and i was very excited to go there. and it was great and memorable. the following week, i was back at our youth meetings, and i registered that they had taken the annual picture. a pity that i wasn’t on it, i thought. i looked at it… and, i swear, i can’t even describe the feeling. it was simply unbelievable: eva tüting was on the picture!!!! i wasn’t, but somehow she was!!! soon i found out that bärchen and jana had invited her and another friend, and they stayed the whole afternoon and evening. and i even had to hear marco telling me that she was really cute and that he talked to her for a while. marco and me weren’t big friends any more, and he knew nothing about eva – only raphael did. but it was even worse to know that she was noticed… after all, she belonged to my little world, and for some time now! this would have been a realistic and natural opportunity to get to know her – i mean, she knowing leo and me knowing her father and all, for sure we would have talked and maybe even been sympathetic. it was so damn frustrating to see that picture, it was a major blow. i even wrote to andre about it, he was in brazil (iasp) at that time. but, must i saw that she looked just like her? and that striped white and black sweater that she used a few months later in the deustch-evern concert, that’s the one on the picture. at that time, i would never dare to get to know someone in an unnatural way… but the fact that she was there, in my world, in the youth group, the only day i wasn’t… it’s a mystery!
fast forward to the summer, school vacations had arrived, and so had andre. we were walking at am sande when i spotted eva from quite far – she was wearing another one of her (for me) trade mark outfits – the blue jeans, blue jacket outfit. and walking away. one of her rare appearances in the city, and already at a time where school was out. this was the last time i saw her before going to brazil myself – for at least half a year, possibly a full year. and that moment was special, because on my return, we would have moved to berlin. this would maybe be the last time i would ever see her again, and at the time, i really believed that.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

vacations - places and people

from december 24, 2008 to january 22, 2009 i had the pleasure to be back in the european winter after sixteen years. it was cold (negative temperatures almost every day), and it was incredible. 14 of these 29 days i was happy to be at my parent's, mostly in basel. i did do some travelling, mostly to see friends and family.

the most special places i went to were: being on the aguille du midi, at 3842 m, viewing the mont blanc (january 9); seeing lüneburg and adendorf (january 12); and being inside of the fritz-walter-stadion in kaiserslautern to see my beloved bayern (january 19, not to be forgotten!).

the most special people were, doubtless, my parents (highlights: a trip to the alps at grindelwald, near interlaken, in december 28; and the very pleasant visit to bodensee and marc's family on january 18), the days with inga in bremen (december 29 to january 1), seeing mareike and tobias in darmstadt (january 11) and dining with michi in stuttgart (january 14). bill showing me around (january 8: montreux, martigny, lausanne), a day with nana (january 21) and the always special visit at the tanten (january 13) were some more of many, many highlights. special mentions for being able to see and talk to frau strube, our neighbor in memeler weg days, at the end of the emotional day in lüneburg/adendorf, and for being able to talk to raphael sanz, whilst getting to know the beautiful nürnberg (january 15).

here is my trip. ch is switzerland, d is germany and f is france.

special places:
basel (ch), bremen (d), darmstadt (d), konstanz (d), lausanne (ch), lörrach (d), ludwigsburg (d), luzern (ch), neuchatel (ch), stuttgart (d)

very special places:
adendorf (d), chamonix-mont-blanc (f), colmar (f), geneva (ch), hamburg (d), jungfraujoch (d), kaiserslautern (d), lavey-les-bains (ch), lüneburg (d), martigny (ch), montreux (ch), nürnberg (d), stein am rhein (ch)

pa & mãezinha, conny, gunther, sebastian & raphael witzig, tante maja & tante hannelore, cornelia, winnie & larissa küsel, benny & tati tscheuschner

special people:
bendigs (hevi, detlef & jared), derrick, elodie, grazi, manuel, miriam, newton, niclaas, raphaël, herr reincke, rickson & family, schlonz, tota & family, vera, wanderlei

very special people:
bill, inga, marc & alma with kids, mareike, michi, nana, raphael sanz, thomas & tobias

not to be forgotten:
andreas, bastian, breno, chistian, daniel, franck, hamit, landon, luca, lucio, mark, martin, michael, miroslav, phillip, zé roberto

for pics of the trip, just visit my multiply (!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

myth (iii) - perfection

the day before yesterday, i was there again. at the site of the place where i saw an inexpressible amount of beauty. it had been over 10 years, and it was special to walk those streets again, to see that room again.
it was that time of year again. the musikschule lüneburg held its open day, one year after the last one cited in one of the past posts. once again, i was playing with a band on the outdoor stage, but before we started, i looked for eva’s classroom (the one in the picture). up to then, i didn’t know where she studied the viola, but i found it quickly, right next to the stage. when i arrived there, only the teacher and another student were there, and some chairs for visitors to sit and watch. i sat, and waited. a nice, old, spacey room. kind of dark, but light was coming through a window, and its beam was visible on the floor.
i don’t know if you ever felt this way, but when the person you’re waiting to see finally arrives, it’s almost as if you have no clue of what to do, where to look at. that’s how i felt most of the time when i saw any of these platonic passions i’d had up to eva, and it was no different with her. when she came in, i almost felt the room becoming very small. after all, i would always watch her from a certain distance, rarely i would be in the same room she was. she seemed a little late, but was all smiles, took out her viola and positioned herself near that window. the light was shining on her dark blond hair, which always seemed reddish – now even more so. she was wearing a blue summer dress with white flowers all over it, only making her feet visible. it was, by fair, my favorite outfit, and i’d seen her use it quite a few times. her hair was perfectly “wusch” – straight, kin-length, golden, and after any movement, it would go back to its initial position in perfect fashion. and she shaked her hair quite a bit while playing. you see, eva is a really talented musician and comes from a family of musiciains – her father reinhard tüting was my brother leo’s teacher for years, and no doubt had a great musical influence on him. and her mother played instruments too, as did her older sister wiebke. but eva was something special. very talented indeed, she played the cembalo (harpsichord), all kinds of flutes and possibly some other instrument; and in addition to that, she had a beautiful voice. but her playing the viola that afternoon has been a very vivid memory since then. the beam of light on her, her movements while interpreting the piece she was rehearsing with her teacher, that dress, that hair, that music, that room… it was as if time had stood still. i almost even forgot i was in love with her; i couldn’t stop staring, looking, admiring, in an awe. this was something really special, someone really special. this is one of those rare moments of perfection. the only one i can remember without having to search my memory – i’m sure there have been others, but none has stuck to mind more than this one. i guess my heart was beating very fast at first, and then almost stopped beating, to not get in the way with what i was seeing, experiencing. and i’d never seen her as beautiful as on that day – and this of a girl i had considered to be physically perfect from a very subjective point of view.
i had to leave the room the play for the band. i was hoping that she would show up and watch – not at all to see me play the saxophone, which wasn’t anything compared to her playing the viola. but to be able to watch her for a little longer. this hunger could not be stilled, i longed to see her. but, differently than last year, she didn’t show. and although i was trying to keep my eyes at her room, right next to where we were, it seemed that she had left and i hadn’t noticed. so i played there, between the hope to still see her at least one more time that day, and the disappointment of her having left. and so it was. we played our set, i still went to the saxophone department and stayed there for a while – knowing that she had left (the open day was over), but still with that little 1% hope that she hadn’t, i talked to some friends while sometimes looking to the other side, where her room, that room, was. maybe she would still walk out.
an enormous adrenaline kick and a shock went through my body when i saw her walking out the building. have you ever felt this? no time to really process that she was, against all odds, still there – she was leaving! not even enough time to process her full beauty, that dress, that face, that hair. i said a very quick and sudden goodbye to my friends and stepped out my building. where was she? gone already? no, there she was, walking. i knew where she was going – to get her bus at am sande, the 1977 (my year of birth) to deutsch-evern. so there she was, walking down apothekenstrasse in the direction of grosse bäckerstrasse. by the way, all these locations (including her room) can be seen on with not real control over my pace, i passed her quite quickly, at bonhorst music store. i had no courage to look back and see where she was and still was walking far too fast. when i took the right at rats-apotheke, i quickly looked back and still saw her. so now i walked slower, towards kleine bäckerstrasse. heart beating really fast, still no courage to look back. finally, when i got to perl buchhandlung, already near am sande, i went in and stopped. where was she? was she gone again? why was i so stupid? why didn’t i look back? she didn’t know who the heck i was! i went back on the street. and then i saw her.
this is another one of those very magical scenes, where time seemed to move very slowly. she was very near, and my natural reaction would be to look away and walk. but i simply couldn’t. i froze and just watched her, and these images are still in my head, in the same (cliché, i know) slow motion i experienced them that day. she was walking, her hair going up and down, always settling perfectly before the next step. she seemed to look nowhere, just out of this world. she didn’t notice me, which was not obvious, because she was only a few meters behind me, in a moving crowd, with only me stopping and staring right at here. it must have been around 4 seconds, but it felt much longer. i then woke up again and moved into the direction of my bus – hers was at the other side of am sande. i even missed my bus back to adendorf to wait for her to get on hers. she still seemed very absent minded, now at a secure distance of around 30 meters. i watched her get into the bus, sit on the left side and leave.
this was the day eva rose above any other girl i had ever seen or had feelings for. this story is still worth quite a few posts, but this day is probably the reason that eva tüting is the myth.
the day before yesterday, when i went to catch the bus to adendorf at am sande (which now leaves from where the old 1977 bus left), i was at the musikschule, so i was able to walk that same historical path once again... i even stopped at the bookstore perl...