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Have a drink Carribean polar bears

October 16, 2012 by  
Filed under love stories

I bend over the bar. For her, not for drinks. She says: “Finnish”; and it all starts right there.

“Finnish”, I smile. “Finnish” I wonder and I smile. F-i-n-n-i-s-h, I let it drup in, drup, drup,

drup, letter for letter.

“Lapland”, I think;


“Foreign affairs” (I just read an article that mentioned the Finland model, questioning myself

what that could be);

“Somewhere north”;


“Bears”? No, no bears I believe, and I smile.

I take another sip of my Friday eve beer. It’s a pity for those bears, I like bears. Maybe I

should go to Greenland and find some bears. My colleague, my Friday beer friend, smiles as I

express my sudden desire to meet some bears, somewhere in the world.

Although bears do trigger my mind, it surprises me how little comes up with “Finland”;

never been there. I have to take a deep breath to swallow that fact. I so genuinely believed

I visited every country in Europe. I realize that it is a self proclaimed lie after all. I quickly

check the globe in my mind, zoom on Europe, slightly disturbed by this unravelled truth:

Reykjavik, Lisbon, Skopje, Kiev, Belgrade, Chisinau of all places… been there, how could I

miss Finland?

So from now on my line should really be: “visited all of Europe, except Finland”.

I have to say, it is quite a disappointing statement. Maybe “abastanza Europe” is better, I

smile, I can live with that.

I look at her. A bit in admiration that she dares, dares to come from that one country I do not

know; the abastanza part of Europe, I look at her again. She is very charming, more even then

I hoped noticing before. Minds are crazy, intuitions delirious sometimes, I like that, it makes

life wonderful and sweet. I could not have placed her wonderful as “Finnish” ‘cause I have

never been there, my personal acknowledgement.

The whole triggers Mr. curiosity. Now I have to ask her what abastanza Europe is doing in

that Bolognese bar. I do not dare to mention abastanza Europe, maybe later I think. As I want

to open my mouth to say her name I realize I forgot her name,… probably the unexpected

realization of “abastanza” annihilated my mind space completely. Without any trace of

shame I ask her name again. I embrace the unfolding spinning of life, what ever it is; mistakes

in the end are what makes my friends smile. My colleague does smile as she hears me saying

that same phrase again: “what is your name?”. It really is clumsy.

“Jane” she answers, smiling. I look at her a bit in unbelief. Probably I just ignored the name

before as it just cannot land at the same time: Jane and abastanza Europe. Jane from

Finland. Now “Jane” has always been a brunette in my mind, and probably not only in mine.

I mean, Jane belongs to Tarzan, that is well known. Jane has a dirty face and bewildered eyes,

is running right out of the jungle, bamboo leaves sticking out of her hair, uncivilized, crazy

beauty. If you ever fall in love with Jane, you’ll drink coconut milk out of gigantic ocean

shelves, paddle in canoe’s, eat self caught fish grilled on ingenuously lit fire somewhere on

deserted beaches full of palm trees, and have a tan the rest of your life. A life I personally

do not strictly oppose. “Jane from Finland in Bologna” is a paradoxal mystery, like “polar

bears on a Caribbean beach”, or simply put: “Jane is Blond”. For a second I wonder if she is

kidding me, not sure whether it is the blond, Jane or the fact she is here that I doubt. I smile as

I realize – kind of in time– it is all a ridiculous twist of mind.

Not that I mind ridiculously happy twisted thoughts, I love them rather. After all I am

sitting in a bar looking at Italian male hands. I lost a bet, and I have to find an Italian date

for my colleague, with that sole requirement that he must have big hands. It doesn’t take

me long to realize she either tricked me into mission impossible, or she just is one of those

impossible requirement persons. I believe the latter is not far off. I do hope she will find her

mister perfect, or fall so crazily in love that it does not matter anymore. Jane, I do feel, does

not complicate her life that much, but that is a wild guess, an opportunistic thought. Very

probably I self picked that thought just to please me. I mean, a smiling Jane from Abastanza

Europe, would she care about preset requirements?

While discussing male hands it starts to strike me; the ever returning mental presence

of “Jane”. I am happy, such a simple thing to smile and feel happy to connect without a

reason. And there does not need to be a reason, not a pursuit, not a follow-up, no rather

not, rather it is just that happy moment, “hey, never knew you were around here”. Even

my colleague from logistics, otherwise very pre-occupied with impossible requirements, is

contagiously taken by my smiling. It didn’t occur to me in Bologna before, unannounced full-

hearted oblivious smile sharing, while I have been here for 4 months. Ex digestion time I

call it, this freeze of heart, it belongs to the art of shifting gears from dual happiness to single


One must know, with a well independent smile firmly entrenched (again), it really does

surprise me when someone somehow, sneaks into your mind and enlarges that smile just

beyond the usual edge. It is kind of unfair really from one point of view. There is no real

reason, no obvious causation for the invasion, let’s admit it just is sneaky, but luckily not


I realize Jane is adding that ridiculous centimetre on the edge of my smile, I wish I could

reach out, blow a bubble and invite Jane for a minute or ten in my ridiculously wonderful

bubble. A gigantic oceanshelf with two straws would help. I can see that bubble, although

abastanza Europe still does not ring a bell in me. I can see my self opening the bubble

door: “hey, who are you, sneaking into my mind space, walking in the corner of my eye,

whispering questions in my ear, questions I know only you can answer, cause they are about


I do smile seeing her smiling, and I do feel that unreasonable: “she got something stopping

me”. As I leave the bar – entrenched independence requires not to stop for too long as getting

ridiculously happy seriously can make a fool out of a man – I know she got my name, and if

she finds me somewhere, maybe she’ll learn me what Finnish abastanza is all about. In the

end, she does study languages, and I got a few of my own, we have all the words to bridge our

worlds as they so could, imaginably, collide.


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