14 August 2016 — Between Slovenia and Germany
by Shaun Terry
Riding the train through the Austrian Alps, reading the book of WWI poetry that Cleo gave me, I’m thinking of “The Sound of Music,” and it’s making me want to cry. I’m not kidding. Maybe I have a disease. I think that the German mother sitting across from me is starting to notice.
She and her husband patiently look after their one-and-a-half-year-old daughter. The daughter’s sleepy and hungry so she whines but only a little. The lady breastfeeds as she explains that the husband used to have a six-pack but that he looks better with a little bit of a belly. It’s all pretty adorable, really. He talks with me about Trump and global capitalism and we agree that the situation’s complicated and unfortunate.
I wouldn’t mind living on the side of one of these mountains. I really like Ljubljana, with its modern infrastructure, ancient architecture, and second-world food prices. It may be the best that former Soviet countries have to offer. These Slovenians go to sleep awfully early, though.
The snow wraps around the tops of the mountains, enveloping their frosty, jagged heads, cutting their tallest points off so that the mountaintops end in wavy, milky frontiers. In Ljubljana, I saw a sickel and hammer painted onto the side of a building, so I guess that the clouds are just keeping the mountains humble. Perhaps Zizek would approve. And so on and so on…