Dutch Train

…A Dutch girl in front of you. An orange shawl around her neck, her white face looks at you from the curly strands of chestnut hair. Blue eyes, red lips…. I’m heading home on the Utrecht train. A couple of hours in the mayhem of Amsterdam. You look around. Sitting next to the girl a man in his 50s, probably working in an office. One of modern times’ invention in his hand. An iPod… You stop for a second because a bulky and bearded fellow just set next to you. So many faces, so many lives, so many thoughts. On my left side every sit is taken too. Two chatting blond Dutch teenage girls. In front of them a guy whose hair hasn’t seen a comb in a while, luckily well fed. His eyes shut; the earphones in his ears. Everyone is here, but actually no one. The chap sitting next to me just started solving a crossword, the curly haired girl is reading a book and beyond her a fellow reading a newspaper with earbugs. No one’s here. The light streaming through the window disturbs my right eye. It lightens the curly haired girl’s face. I stare at her for a couple of minutes while she’s reading her book…A look outside the window and amongst the thousands of dancing light beams the buildings of Amsterdam. Red bricks, grey walls, green trees. A suburb’s colours lay beside the rail tracks. I once again take a glance at the curly haired girl, with her thoughts deeply imbedded in the pages of the chunky book. The bald guy on the left row is quietly snoozing for a few moments now. I stop for a second, because the ticket inspector asked for my ticket. Alstublift she says and heads to the next passenger. No one’s here. We’ve already passed Amsterdam and in the distance the Sun is preparing to cover itself with the waves of the North Sea. Until then I admire the Dutch countryside. Strikingly green fields criss-crossed by channels on which well fed cows and ship graze. For a moment my thoughts run home to admire the Transylvanian countryside. Not a lot is happening around me, ‘cause no one’s here, but still there is plenty to talk about. A country planned precisely inch by inch. Sometimes organised too much. I miss the Transylvanian mountains, the wilderness, the mountains where still nature reigns supreme. The retiring Sun is increasingly disturbing my eyes, as if with his every movement he wants me to look at him. Maybe he wants to whisper something? I look at him but he’s silent. Maybe another time he’ll tell me why he was bugging my eye. The guy sitting next to me moves. He adjusts his tie and falls back into his crosswords. For a moment there was someone, now there’s nobody. Here and there laughter breaks the silence. A bearded young Dutchman with a blue bag on his back breaks the silence with his comments against the government or life. For a moment everyone looks at him. We are all here. He passes by slowly with his bag. Once again nobody. Another train passes by. In the meantime the office worker sitting in front of me starts looking at me. Still there is someone. Sometimes there is sometimes theres isn’t. We’ve left behind a grey industrial plant. Yellowish strands of grass broke the grey concrete slabs…A few minutes and we’ve arrived…

On a train between Amsterdam and Utrecht, 23rd of Oct. 2007



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