Sunday 21 September 2014

I celebrate 16 years in Bucharest

Nice of Bucharest to celebrate my 16 years here with fireworks and concert last night. 

Sixteen years. Gulp.

I watched and listened from my terrace overlooking Lipscani which day by day becomes more artificial and less congenial. But asa e viata, as Romanians say. It means 'that's life', but in a melancholy, resigned way, definitely not in a zen way.

How long twenty years seemed when aged eight I read Dumas's Twenty Years After and how old D'Artagnan and the musketeers seemed in that book when they tried in vain to save the life of King Charles I  of England and Scotland. They were forty.

However  I am the same age as they were twelve years after that when they restored his son, King Charles II to the English throne. So onward.

My friend Matt dug up and sent me this a week or so again in a mail saying 

Came across this last night. A young and rather dreamy looking man is captaining the Queens team

It was painful for me to see how perfectly nice looking and even impressive I was when I felt at the time that I was nothing of the sort. Asking around my friends it seems though that most people were blancmanges of self doubt at 22. Even my incredibly hot friend Alina told me she didn't know at 22 that she was anything special. So any young person reading this please profit by this to know that you are much better than you think. Unless you are a psychopath, in which case you are not and anyway already have a high self regard.

It is exactly 30 years ago since I was in University Challenge -  and walking home I was stunned to realise that more than half of those years I have spent in Bucharest. Which is a very good place to spend them, but how time flies when you're having fun.

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