David Arioch – Jornalismo Cultural

Jornalismo Cultural

Sonya

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It all transpired truthful, as an antithesis of artificiality of the concrete world that surrounded us

Lada, the goddess of love and beauty that I met through Sonya (Art: Igor Ozhiganov)

Lada, the goddess of love and beauty that I met through Sonya (Art: Igor Ozhiganov)

I have always considered it intriguing to meet people at random, without planning or intent. It seems that everything flows more naturally, since there is no concern to surprise someone. You see yourself in one place and start talking without expecting anything from the other person, nor she you. No tension, no anxiety, there is only the moment that can be ephemeral or lasting – and may or may not turn into something else.

There is beauty in unpredictability, and maybe it subsists in the absence of expectations, the fact that sometimes you can be in a place simply by being, with no intention of getting lost or finding a way.  Clarifying the introduction, I will relate a story to be taken into account.

One day, as I finished my college assignment, I stayed away from my classroom. I went down the third block staircase and I passed a group of young people who were talking so loud that conversation echoed through the building. Then, I sat on a bench in front of the first block. I was quietly, paying attention to everything around me. There was little movement in the courtyard, which was quite predictable, since most of the students were in classrooms.

Occasionally some people passed by me, heading towards the other blocks. The conversations ranged from backbiting to academic concerns. I thought it was funny to see girls dressed in such fine form. I started to think about how long they took to dress themselves. Expensive clothes, haughty posture, pointed nose and shaped hair almost geometrically, everything endorsed in my ideas the existence of a fatuous world, who aspires the most tangible of the fragile perfections. It was beautiful and sad. But I was not there to evaluate or judge, it didn’t mean much to me.

“What interest I had in the way people get dressed?” I always went to college dressed the same way, often in jeans, a heavy metal band t-shirt and sneakers or combat boots. I saw the world through the jet-black hair that lay on my forehead and lined on my eyes, dark as night.

At the beginning of the second millennium, I was wearing a large labret spike, an elongated pointed piercing that blazed between my lips and my chin. Even in the dark, it sparkled and attracted curious and nosy looks. I lost the count of how many people approached me over six years to ask questions about it.

Even after so many approaches, I continued explaining that it did not hurt, it was not difficult to sanitize and it did not hurt to put it. “But how do you kiss someone with it? It is not uncomfortable?”, some people questioned. At the time, it was not common to find people with such adornment. And it was precisely because of this labret spike that I met an Italian girl with Russian descent.

That night, in front of Block 1, it was more than ten minutes that I was sitting on the same bench. I left the classroom because I did not feel well. So, I was out there aspirating a bit of algid breeze that night fortuitously sent to me. Together, she brought a handful of leaves gathered around my feet, forming a mixed carpet of green and brown. Time passed, and the greenish balm anticipating the rain intensified.

“Today it does not come”, I predicted, observing the partially clear sky that confounded the forecasters for several days. It was at that moment, when I decided to get up to go to the bathroom, when a young woman approached me. Her voice was sweet and gentle, full of a strong and unfamiliar accent: “That must hurt, doesn’t it?”, she joked smiling, showing the ball of her labret. I replied that it only hurts when I fall with my chin on the floor – and I smiled briefly. Then she asked if she could sit. “Sure, no problem …”, I said. Her name was Sonya, and to my surprise, she brought a sudden autumnal warmth which appeased the abysmal cold night.

Although she was a foreigner, she spoke Portuguese with astonishing fluency. We talked about music and cinema. Without delay, the conversation turned into a philosophical and existentialist flame – filled with satires, aphorisms and bifurcated and meaningless comments. Human behavior, the meaning of life and our role in the world appeared ironically between topics, as well as the essence of the non-existent. “Things can make sense, but do not always, right?” “Nothing does not necessarily have to be only nothing, neither more than nothing.”

“How can anyone know what the taste of the night is if it is not able to absorb its flavor with closed eyes, recognize her from her perfume?” “I don’t want to have a mechanical existence, which does not allow me to take time for thinking and questioning. If I completely surrender to work, I’m afraid I can cease to exist. Maybe in a few years I will not see anything in the mirror. I will have to embitter the disappearance of my own reflection. ” “Ni ni ni ni ni. ”

Looking around us, we were like two strangers, scattered between comedy and drama of a variegated universe, such as those that mix real people and cartoon characters. We were ourselves – unveiled without the need for simulation – and that fed our noisy humanity in abstraction. You have the same feeling when you are a kid and go out to play with your first little friend. Within minutes, your eyes no longer see strange, and you realize the lightness of a contact on the threshold of life is so essential and substantial as to hold the maternal hand, feel the sublime and domestic warmth.

After that day, we continued to see each other. My fascination and deference by Sonya evolved to the proportion of all that we did not say, though we understood. Talking, as necessary as silence. I saw her as one of those rare people who can make someone dive within yourself to rediscover bigger, livelier, lighter, more transparent, more free and so much more.

She radiated joy; not the fake kind, ravishing, effusive or ill-considered, but placid, unfeigned and melic as their kabbalistic brown-green eyes; itself lights illuminating more than any light in our surroundings. Her almond long hair sparkled as gold thread outlining her fine and graceful features, further enhancing her beauty.

Even without lipstick, her lips blushed as fresh and wild strawberries. When she smiled, displaying exquisite niveous teeth, her dimples sprouted sweetly, more beautiful than the most portentous illuminated manuscript. It all transpired truthful, as an antithesis of artificiality of the concrete world that surrounded us. We learned more about life and human nature between the lines of our eyes. It was not difficult, if we saw ourselves in each other, in the completeness of spontaneity.

One night, when I did not have class, we met in her apartment. We went to the kitchen, and I helped her to prepare piroshki, buns stuffed by her with fruits and vegetables. We ate and sat on the couch to watch “Ladri di Biciclette”, by masterly neorealist Vittorio de Sica. In the scene where they steal the bike of the miserable paper hanger Antonio Ricci, I noticed my right shoulder wet. When I looked to the side, I saw Sonya crying, with inflamed eyes and eburnean skin made red. I smiled, nudged her with innocence and made fun of her sensitivity. She buried her face in her fine hands, changed her mien and gave me two pinches.

At the end of the movie, she told me the story of Lada, the goddess of love and beauty in slavic mythology. “She had similar attributes with Freya, Isis and Aphrodite. She had long, golden hair. She prefered it in braids with a grain wreath, which symbolizes abundance. But she could also change something in her appearance if she did not want to be recognized. Lada was very popular among the ancient slavs, because she was able to replace the winter cold embrace for the delightful pleasant heat”, she narrated.

Later, with the arrival of a young woman with whom Sonya shared the apartment, we walked to the elevator entrance, where we said goodbye with a hug that lasted nearly five minutes. Residents passed us complaining about the cold that we did not feel. They were surprised to see me wearing a t-shirt. My jacket was resting on my right arm, unconcerned with what awaited me on the streets. I smiled and closed my eyes, absorbing the organic balm of her hair and the predicates that life emanated from her body.

Outside, the drizzle was falling and disappeared before touching my skin. Many people walked quickly holding a purse or a briefcase on their heads, fearing of suspended water droplets. I walked for a few blocks, and felt my body so heated that even the wind gusts, that twisted the finer branches of the trees, didn’t hit me. I felt the warm arms of Sonya around me, softer than satin sheets. Halfway, the serene dissipated and the cloudy sky cleared for a moment. Some passersby pointed to the sky, where a moving woman’s face was smiling while in primacy crumbles.

Written by David Arioch

October 28th, 2016 at 10:55 pm

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