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20/3/2004: The Nits in Paradiso


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20/3/2004: The Nits in Paradiso
Tuesday, 23 March 2004 Symeon Charalabides (symeon@systasis.com)

The first thing you notice is the smell.
You'll get used to it as soon as the first thing that tickles your enthusiasm comes to your attention. It's always worked this way, the average delay measures at 3.8". Even through the lashing rain, the distinguishing features of the land stand unscathed before your embrace: blossoming, wide, rolling columns of breathtaking colour, intersecting waterways everywhere and vision ample, sharp and true, distorting timespace with its limitlessness.
You are reminded of freer, happier times left behind and wonder whether the distinctive curvature of the universe applies to the point of ensuring their return. Quite inspired, this thought for the day; then again, inspiration is what you're here for.

Holland.

Carefully navigating the faint shade cast by blood-red brick buildings move vertical than the eye will readily acknowledge, you find yourself wondering why impulse seems to be failing you. Nothing really old, though that was always the case, and yet you feel nothing. A flock of tourists crashes your perception momentarily and walks awkwarly away, their eyes bloodshot and bulging under the intoxicationg stress of sinful comportment. Nothing really new, either; time has just vanished. You stand pointedly in limbo.
Then, as if by the caress of an invisible hand, silently, a slight brightening of the scenery. The marked ray of light points to a bridge slowly lifting to allow a barge through. Your eye is caught by the cyclists halted by the dropping ramp as they are touched softly by the shadow's tip and you hear their playful chimes greet the advance of the day. You stand in idleness while something inside connects and, suddenly, you're in. A smile blossoms effortlessly as you fade into the heart of European culture once more.

Amsterdam.

Then there are sweeping rays of light, passing movements and hollering voices. You pause to listen as static evolves into sounds, comprehensible, clear and friendly. You seek faces among faces until the whole crowd matures into a single entity and stares into your eyes. All feels right, distinctions fail.
This is the place where you may see Seppo stand behind you in the crowd. This is the time when you may hear a stranger's compulsive hand gestures as they obey the music. This is the instance you chose to remember two feet stomping on the ground, two hands juggling the air, a wide smile under sparkling eyes. You put yourself against the test for two hours and come out excited, satisfied and content. The band has been.

Paradiso.

Now you look back and marvel, then turn away and think no more. Don't question your blessings. Everything was put right. You had been worried for a while, but you feel safe again.
And maybe now, the next time the clouds part gracefully and allow the finger of God to touch you momentarily, you won't be embarrassed or afraid to dance your little jingle on your personal mock-up stage, and you may even discreetly bow before your imaginary audience, secure in the momentum of the music.

The feet will keep stomping, the hands will keep juggling, and all is smiles again. The band said so that night.

Welcome back, Robert Jan. We missed you.

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