Thursday, February 16, 2012

the world is changing

I know I have been quiet for too long, this is just a note to keep in touch:
the computer conked out because of power surges due to the instability of the countrys electrical system..because we were (are?) not able to import energy to support the winter use of air conditioning systems for heating (due to the fact that many people are unable to buy petrol for heating) and the system had (has?) to rely on its own resources which are not enough to support demand. A new cold snap is coming and they are talking of the risk of power cuts. I do not know how much of what I hear are shock tactics, but there is an overdose of that
shock tactics, I mean
and shocking stuff happening, too
today is tsiknopempti, "smell of barbecued meat Thursday", the week before last of the carnival, last meat eating week before Lent. Next week is cheese and milk week, then no meat or dairy products for 40 days until Easter
so even in our urban times, today was a day to go out to tavernas with friends and eat. I heard on the radio the butchers at the meat market have a tradition of cooking meat and giving it for free the past few years. Today they gave out more than a tonne of meat, there were queues of ordinary people waiting for hours in a freezing drizzle to get a pork chop.. grandfathers, the man said, my mother and father, your mother and father, and his voice broke
I went down to Athens yesterday, coming out of the metro the air was heavy and smelled of tear gas and burnt stuff
during Sundays riots about 90 buildings were burnt, 10 of them historical and architectural landmarks, 19th century-
they were piling trucks with scrap metal
everywhere, in the heart of the city, broken marbles, broken traffic lights, electrical boxes
shocking is the least I can say
the smell of burning in the air, the face of hunger on the people you see around you, isn't that the essence of war?
I got pork chops cut rate, the boy is trick or treating, yes, this is when we do it, in the darkest heart of winter, they dress up and roam the village "to scare the old people" and get sweets as an appeasement. It used to be the grown ups, dressed in black goatskins. This year the boys set out earlier than other times- parents are afraid. he'll be back for his meat. Traditionally.

I leave you, for now, with the healing music of Stella Rambisai Chiweshe.
once, a long time ago I had the honour of meeting her and she allowed me to play with her in a couple of gigs in Istanbul, I was very green then.. she said I should play louder, I was, I think just petrified!
One night, we younguns gathered to say goodnight before we went to our rooms in the hotel. She sat in her chair and we went up to her one by one. When i went up she said:
Goodnight, my child, and take care, the world is changing
Goodnight,  goodnight, all, goodnight Stella who taught me what a queen is, and thank you for it all, then, and now.


Patricia said...

Your post is very powerful. It conveys so much feeling and import.
Thank you for giving a close up view of your world as it is today.

Martine said...

the world is changing and so is the worlds oldest democratie.
If there's consolation it is to be found in beauty.............Stella's music.
Good night dear Manya.

deanna7trees said...

you are in my thoughts.

grace Forrest~Maestas said...

Manya. more in the morning.
i am morning. more then. but in this moment, Love.

Cheryl Razmus said...

How frightening to see your country in tatters. Makes my troubles seem so small. Be well.

Valerianna said...

Intense. I've heard from some friends on Samos, and they say that its easier on the islands, or at least in rural villages? I imagine so, but how devastating - everything. Hope there's enough fuel to get through the cold. Blessings.

Manya Maratou said...

thank you all for your comments! it is heartening to know that there are "sister souls" out there listening, watching, feeling. this morning it is snowing, fat snowflakes doing their beautiful crazy dance, they do not lie on the ground. it is easier in the village, the fact that the boy was out after dark yesterday testifies to that. but I do not leave him alone in the house anymore, we used to sleep with doors unlocked.

Jacky said...

Manya, it must be devastating for you. We just dont imagine things like this happening in this day and age.
Prayers and thoughts are with you...I hope peace can be restored soon.
Sending love...and is there anything we can send you?

Jacky xox

deanna7trees said...

i woke up this morning thinking about you and, i too, am wondering if there is anything we can do to help you.

Penny Berens said...

Dear Manya...Yes, we are listening, watching and feeling for you and yours and your fellow countrymen and women.

grace Forrest~Maestas said...

sometimes i guess all there is to
do is to Tell what you see, Tell
how it feels to see what you see.
Every day, my heart is with you.

aracne said...

Very sad, very moving.
We feel safe and confident, it takes nothing to suddenly change our world.

Velma said...

this (blog entry) was written some time ago. may you be well. thank you for the music gift.

MulticoloredPieces said...

Hi, Manya. We had natural gas shortages during January and February in Tunisia--worrying. Fortunately, spring is here. Hope things are going better for you.
best, nadia

Clare Wassermann said...

I am hoping that there is more light in your life now than it was when you read this post. I have just discovered your blog. I love that woman and her instrument. I hope you find the wherewithal to post again soon.

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