While we were waiting for our shawarmas, under the influence of hunger and the hypnotic effect of rotating chicken, I fell into a trance of idle thinking. Sometimes I envy Šoić for being a smoker. Yes, I know they’re bad. But smoking cigarettes day in and day out always provides some kind of pleasure. You pay dearly for it with your health and money, but in return you get some kind of pleasure about 40 times every single day.
But all that can change in a matter of minutes. Everything’s great until you can’t find your lighter or you run out of rolling papers. It’s then that all the benefits fall by the wayside because of the worry and grief that that results from it. What feeds him, destroys him. But that’s the price you pay. It’s about deceiving yourself.
I don’t know, in the end I’m not prepared to take that kind of risk. To find pleasure in the small things in life is a virtue. It takes practice. Test yourself and push yourself into new situations. Life is too short to be ashamed—especially to be ashamed about life. Taking satisfaction in the small things is the real treasure. You’re rich if you don’t need much to be happy.
It doesn’t matter what it is, you just have to enjoy doing it. Like pissing in the black Mediterranean before day break, watching the lights of the stars and planes landing in the city behind us break the darkness that blends the sky and the sea in front of Larnaca. It’s the state of being aware of the moment and embracing it: You know where you are and how you feel.
The warm sand is wonderful, the black sea, the stars and the planes are your own private theatre. A gentle wind in your face moves the hair across your forehead. Ripples. It’s great being here. The ripple of the waves and all the sounds of the night. Behind me lay two tired comrades under beach umbrellas that rattle in the wind.
Endlessly tired from the day and yet ready for an infinity of days like this. The waves make small canyons in the sand under my feet and enrich the silence around me, until a new wave comes along and wipes it all clean.
We’re back on the road into the unknown. A kind of darkness. Something new. Awareness. We’re on the road again. We’ve come to test our shame and refine our ability to feel. The feeling of the road. A sense of the unknown. Uncertainty. Change. These are my cigarettes. And I’ve just lit one by pissing in the black Mediterranean.
Šoić is about to light up one of his until he realizes he’s got no lighter—although he just had one in his hand. The smell of cooking meat permeates my thoughts and pushes everything else into the background. It’s time for dinner.
Blogger: Vitomir Maričić
*The opinions expressed are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect those of HRT.