Thursday, 7 July 2011

Smokers’ lounge

One could guess they were a family from the composition of the group, and their common features. Father, mother and their two grown-up obese children, brother and sister. In fact they were four separate individuals acting each for themselves. Everyone carried their own luggage, everyone ordered and paid their own drink. They didn’t emit any joy or excitement from going on vacation together. Maybe it was too early in the morning. They didn’t seem to know how to be a family. Or maybe they forgot...

The cafe in the duty free zone of the Düsseldorf Weeze Airport has a smokers’ lounge. It’s a room for smokers separated from the main area by the wall and two glass doors. While the other members of the family were ordering their drinks and sandwiches, the father seemed very interested in the smokers’ room. He was peeking inside through a glass door. He desperately needed a smoke or just wanted to belong to the group on the other side. Anyhow, he couldn’t help staring through the glass.

“Look, there’s a smokers’ lounge!” – he proclaimed rather excited when his daughter came in his direction. As if she hadn’t heard him she said something about a free table in the middle of the room and went past to take her place. The man looked around searching for his son, but didn’t find any support there. His son joined his sister at the table. The man remained at the door of the smokers’ lounge waiting for his last hope – his wife. He was shifting nervously from foot to foot, watching his wife order her sandwich and looking at the smokers behind the glass.

Finally she approached with a plate in her hands. “There’s a smokers’ lounge!” – he said excited, his eyes full of hope. She didn’t look at him. She dismissed the idea with a barely visible shrug and went past him to join her children at the table. Disappointed her husband followed her throwing one last sad glance through the glass door.

My heart sank. “How can you not love him so much?! How can you not see that what he wants?! How can you refuse him this little joy!? Why don’t you just let him enter that door? Or go with him just once, just this time. Just because this vacation together is so special.” I wanted to shout this, but I didn’t. Caught in their inability to show and cherish their emotions they might not appreciate my interference.

Instead I thought that we all should watch each other closer so we don’t dismiss a desire of someone we love with a barely visible shrug...

Hauschka - Subconscious

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