Saturday, August 18, 2007

Timing in Travels

I always tend to think I am 30 sec too early or 30 sec too late in most aspects of my life, or may be it is a month, year, whatever. But when I travel, I seem to get it just right.

I was in Zurich on a spur of a moment thing last weekend, and that happened to coincide with the annual Street Parade, a Berlinesque techno-love thing (more techno, less love), or New Yorkesque Pride (less pride, more alcohol on the street) events. What looked like 100 thousand or more are on the street and they shed clothes, show skin or fading tattoo or the bleeding piercing, acquire fur, color face and hair, tort, twist, transcend the days, grow impossibly tall on stilts, or whatever. The ultra clean city of Zurich flexes and for a day, gathers beer cans, wrappers and flyers without a sigh, and time slows down notwithstanding the numerous public clocks. The trick in such festivals is to get the energy just taut, the buzz grown to a point, a bow pulled to its extreme, a gun loaded and cocked, hand on the trigger, and of course, hold that as long as one can, don't let the buzz go over, the arrow fly or the gun explode.

A year ago (?), I was in Pisa, Italy for a day, and coincidentally, that was the festival of the Saint Patron of Pisa in Italy. As the night settles, electric lights get shut down, and candles on windows of mansions along the Arno river get lit up, fireworks explode and the Italian style shows itself in stunning men and women, young and not-so young, strutting. There is more to the festival I am told, but I am happy that for a few moment, I felt Italian, strutting on the Lungarni.


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