Milan at August- Dead City

As I like to call lovingly Milano during the August time – the dead city

Some people love it, some people hate it and most are not here!

The usual morning rush hour of people storming to the tabaccherie to grab their famous brioche and the cappuccino has been replaced by shut down stores with chairs being put upside down on the tables. 

The neighbours with the shouting children and were at the end one of the two parents shout out “Basta!” and sigh a relieved “Madonna” once the children have finally left their homes is replaced by a utter silence and only the cracks of the floors of the beautiful and old homes can be heard. 

Even the advertisements and the public transportation are affected by the literal shut down period of the whole city. The metros arrive every 15 to 20 minutes rather than every 5 minutes. Instead of the low cost, high quality advertisements for resteraunts the advertisement use the only words, which will make an impact during this time! They say: “We are open!”. That is all that is needed to attract the remainders of this city. 

From hairdresser, bars, resteraunts to dry cleaners they have all shut down and a hand written sign tells us when they will be back.

Ah Milano how beautiful you can be when parking can be found without any problems, when there are no traffic jams! We – the few survivors, who have staid behind enjoy the warmth without any loud noises and crowd of people and sit outside by one of the few open places and drink peacefully our Aperol Spritz!

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Random everyday quotes

Once in awhile we hear powerful quotes from random people at everyday situations.

They might be powerful once that stick to our mind or the once, which make us chuckle or see certain occurrences from a different perspective and make you think for awhile or longer about them.

Below are some listed from people at every day situations:

  • If it is cold you wait, if it is not you eat. ( Lianne, entrepreneur/ Internations dinner organiser -about food)
  • Just because they belong together it does not mean that they have to be always together (my mum/ Hale, an engineer- about packing shoes separately but also applicable to many other things)
  • If you cannot hear yourself how will you be able to hear me? (Random movie quote from the woman arguing with her husband – about any argument applicable basically)
  • Germans are driving aggressive as well however within the set rules (Deniz-me/ Contract Manager – about the driving style of Germans compared to Italian and Turkish driving style)
  • Everything has an end only the sausage has two (Random German saying- about any ending in life)
  • I am a free time millionaire (Edina, full time student who moved from Munich to Sarajevo to experience a full time freedom)
  • If you are a pilot you need to be able to read the clouds (Enrico/ soon to be helicopter pilot about being a pilot)
  • If I can help people, I feel like that I am not a nobody (Agusta, Portier in Milano about helping others)
  • Just because you have seen it, it does not mean that you have done it (Sam/ US soldier based in Germany since 10 years- about experiences in life)

The ride

They were riding on their bicycles side by side since quite awhile. She started to not recognize the streets anymore. Out of nowhere her fellow rider kicked into the bicycle so that she hit the wall hard and her bicycle fell with a loud sound on the floor. She immediately felt her back pain and by the time she had recovered to look she saw only the back wheels of the person, who had done this to her. They had known each other for awhile and it came unexpected to her. 

With some pain she got up and recognised that she was in an isolated place. There were no people on the road. At daylight, with no person to help, all by herself, she started to walk in a crunched way. Painfully slow she took a step after step. The road would have been short perhaps under different conditions. She might have enjoyed the warmth of the sun, the sound of the birds and the slight wind.

However, today she barely recognized her surrounding. Her sole aim was to find a phone and call some help. At that time, she cursed her habit to not take her phone with her whilst being on the ride. She cursed removing regularly her credit cards from her purse and leave them at home so that in case of rubbery it would not be a big loss. Finally, she saw an internet shop. Her heart was beating faster and she moved faster towards it but the sudden pain bought tears into her eyes. Determined not to give up she bit her teeth and continued whilst her face was covered with sweat. So was her body. She finally reached the door and she her lips were curving upwards to a grin and froze in the midst. The hanging sign in front of the door with bright dark blue colours read “CLOSED”…[to be continued] 
 

The red car

Whilst a red car- – was driving on a long long way I saw the same coloured car with the same module just in front of me. It was faith I thought. It felt like I had found my soul partner and just in front of me! 

So I started singing: We belong together

Out of nowhere my soul partner changed lanes and took over. Now felt a bit heartbroken and thought it is normal that two develop at different speeds. Through time our desires, interests, lifestyles and even thoughts change. So, I was motivated like never before to recover the distance but recognized that a white car had pushed itself in front of me so the song became

Red, white, red. Red, white, red. So close but so far it seems. 

Nevertheless, I could see the red car and determined to catch up I overtook obstacles to reach it. To shorten the distance to my soul partner. A white car would not stop me; especially it if it was to reach my one and only. But then a truck was between us. So the song continued

Red, white, truck, red. Red, white truck, red.

Not being able to see my red car did not change my desire to catch up and get at the same level. Through a long time I worked on myself and tried to match up with the red car. I made some risky moves and some less risky once. Throughout the process, I found myself and but was still driven by my “old desires”. There was something I had found, which was irreplaceable-peace with myself. Not being fully aware of the consequence of this found treasure I continued on my way. Surprisingly, somehow I managed to overtake the white car and soon afterwards the truck as well. My heart was pounding out of excitement. Soon it would be 

Red and red reunited again.

So, I overtook them with immense pleasure and excitement. I did not take notice that I had not been able to see for a long time the red car. It was not an important factor because I knew that we belonged together. I did not question why the red car had not paced itself to match my speed so that we could be together going through the same journey and develop ourselves. These were not important factors and I chose  to ignore it.

I finally reached the end or beginning and was in front of the white car and truck.There was no red car anymore… All my expectations, desires, hard work, which I had reflected on this one red car were vanished as if they had never existed. But I knew that they had existed. So I sang to myself

Mirror mirror on the road, show a reflection of myself. 

I used to be red car with a specific brand. However,  I was not anymore a red car but a red and white coloured one and in the mirror I did not see only myself…I saw another red and white next to me, who was driving since awhile next to me. Perhaps, the start of the journey was for both of us due to different reasons, perhaps the experiences we had made during our journeys were completely different and shaped us in different ways. However, we had been driving side by side for awhile and appreciating ourselves existence but had never laid eyes as we did now. So, we continued driving side by side but this time fully acknowledging our presence and we song united: 

Side by side we drive along. Side by side we experience together.

“It’s not time that changes man nor knowledge the only thing that can change someone’s mind is love.”

One ordinary day

There was this movie about the ability of the men within this family to go back in time.

It was passed at a certain age to the male however if he should have ever two children then the ability would be lost.

So, you can imagine the situations, which benefit from such kind of ability. 

At one scene he went to a blind dinner. You know where they bring you to a complete dark room and you are not able to see what you are eating and the people with whom you are sharing the dinner. In this way you have to rely on your other senses such as tasting and hearing.

At this event he met his dream girl but missed the chance due to different circumstances to be her boyfriend. He re-winded it many times until the scenery was that he was with her together. 

Also different conversations, events like a car crash could be avoided through this ability.

At some point his dad, an experienced time traveler, gave him an advice.

Is anyone else a big fan of these conversations between the wise person and the beginner? In this case father and son.

The father gave him the advice: “Live one day without using your ability. Just live one ordinary life.”

So, the next day the son experienced for the first time since he had had his gift a normal day. The situations he would usually have improved through his ability staid the same.

At Starbucks the coffee was spilled on him, it started raining and he had forgotten his umbrella. He rushed from one place to another. At work he had to go through the day without re-winding it. He came back miserable and tired back home.

His dad asked him: ” How was your day?“. He answered “Miserable.” His dad responded: ” Tomorrow I want you to repeat the same day, today, and this time go through it consciously.”

He did as he was told re-did the same day without using his abilities. However, this time he woke up earlier, recognised and responded friendly to the cashier’s joke at Starbucks, helped out a collegou at work and recognised at the evening whilst looking up the beautiful colours of the sky.

It was a different day but also the same day.

The only important factor was that he lived the day with a different attitude and went through it consciously rather than taking small events and gestures as granted or not even recognising it.

Small gestures are not small. They speak volumes for the once who choose to hear them.

The hidden issue

The other day I was driving on the motorway and there was a long queue building up behind a enermous big truck. 

Now this one was so long and heavy that nobody wondered that it was moving so slowly and creating traffic.

Nonetheless, the atmosphere of the followers was not the best as you can imagine. Many honks and curses were heard and could be imagined. Since I was in no rush I was relaxed but decided at some point to overtake the truck. The undertaking started at the rear end and lasted for a long period at the middle part. I remember thinking that no wonder that he was struggling to build up a proper speed. Finally, I reached the front and to my total surprise there was a tiny car in front of this gigantic truck. Due to the size difference the car looked like a toy car. So, the cause of this was not the huge truck, which seemed at first glance the issue but in front of it was a small car, which too many had not seen and ignored. 

It might not be the easiest to recognize or acknowledge matters, which cannot be seen clearly at first glance. We make assumptions based on our perceptions, we make assumptions to keep us in a comfortable place. Situations we take as granted and do not want to look into deeply will remain as they. What is there to lose when we try to change it? What is there to gain from it?

Do we want to change it and hear the bitter truth but perhaps an explanatiory truth, which will put a new light on settled patterns? Do we want to continue our life’s with accepting the situation as we perceive it or do we want to see things clearly?

Morning Rush



Mornings at 7:30 a.m. in the public transport; the faces of the involuntarily chosen early morning birds, the sleepy eyes and “out of energy” bodies and faces sitting or standing in the metro with the look of pure unhappiness. Almost like a dark cloud hovering over them. “Let it rain, let it rain…” can be heard from the cloud from a distinct sad voice. 

 Even when the pretty woman or handsome man enters the metro, they are only rewarded with a passing glance, whereas in the afternoon or at the evening it would change to a full blown intensive look and perhaps more. But for that, the energy, the attention span is not there in the morning in the public transport. 

The energy floats back when the desired station is approached. The bodies are tense, the eyes are awake. Unaware that in there current situation, that they are neatly in the middle of a sardines tin with close proximity to each other. Some you think about how nice they smell others not. The elbows are out on their way to make way, the mouth warped with a grim look and one hand has the weapon of the weapons, the metro card, which you need to swipe out. Ready to go out for war!

There are different warrior types; the once, who are faking the casual relaxedness, although the stop is coming closer with every second. The way this person stands and the slow movements towards the exit give him away. Then there are the hectic born; already tapping their feet nervously stops before and uneasily moving around in their centimetre territory. The third type of warriors are the strategic warriors; the observers, who are already analysing each person’s moves whilst calculating the best move for them to reach the final goal of getting out smoothly. The three types of warriors can be seen at every public transport. 

There are smaller groups, which cannot be classified though as warriors like the “starers”, who enjoy the long uncomfortable unnecessary stare and some of them succeed with the permanent stare that fellow travellers leave to another place. The “sleepers” people have the ability to sleep anywhere and the “at homers” feel at home as the name gives it away. They put on their make-up and the final touches to their outfit. I haven’t seen shavers yet but that might be the next step. Another group of many but the most annoying of the fellow travellers are the “careless” people. They are blissfully unaware or uncaring of their surroundings; leaning with their full body weight on the pole and through that squeezing some other person’s hand or turning around with their rucksacks without a care in the world if someone gets harmed during that. Also they can sometimes be seen as hugging the pole and with that giving no chance to others to hold on to the pole. Sorry, to have walked into your intimate hug.

The above mentioned three warrior types, wrapped in their individual mindset, blending out everything thought in their upbringing about manners, ready to use their elbows against others, their mouth and their mind ready to speak attack or defend. Although, having said that the public transport has trained them to be silent warriors. Rarely, will the public transport become a ground of full blown shout out fights of these experienced groups. The actions, gesticulation and facial expressions will be the characteristics, will be the once that will lead the war and win it. For whom that is not clear. Them against me. Me against them. Although, I am one of them. 

The moment when a child or an elderly person appears in front of that person the whole war mindset and the preparation freeze for a moment. This can as well happen if a familiar looking person appears of whom they are fond of. The association always is and will be our strongest point. Suddenly, through that the situation calms down. The warrior grounds shift to an alternative point after that person. After reaching the alternative point, it re-starts again with overtaking in quick steps each other, using their legs and bodies as being in a skiing slalom, from the right and from the left people are overtaken.

The saved couple of seconds are not seconds but precious time, nobody is willingly to give up on easily, since it was fought so hard to gain them. This valuable time can be used to buy a snack and/or reach the next warrior ground (metro) or simply leave the warrior ground for good. Before exiting completely the underground however, the expertise quick flick of the metro card is performed. The card slides and out of the machine and releases the warrior from the warrior field. You may have won this battle but we will see if you will win the war!

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