2017-08-10 20:08 — Maribor
Today August 10th is my last day as an Other Words writer in residence and there are so many people I would like to thank. I already started in a cheesy way by entitling this entry sLOVEnia… oh well, sometimes we have to be cliché! I also feel that this entry will be similar to those never ending Oscar thank you speeches, yes, I am planning to thank my grandmother and all your grandmother too! Although this is my last day in Other Words, it is not my last day in Maribor, sorry mariborians, you’ll have me around for two more weeks.
I would like to start thanking Idoia and Imanol from Other Words, for organizing my trip and being always ‘there’ in the distance. You belong to a wonderful Other Wor(l)d. My adventure started in Bermeo with you, Ekaitz, Joseba and Gerard. Thank you for that lunch, those conversations, and Gerard, thank you for being the best TP dealer I could ever have!
A big thank you to Kibla of course, and everyone that floats around those three venues, the Sandras, the long-haired ones (whose names I still ignore), Cameron, Peter, Marko and a big and special etc. The café always offered me a peaceful place to work, your exhibitions were inspiring and the overall atmosphere unique! From this group of wonderful creatures I would like to highlight Sunraa, my guardian angel who flights around Maribor on a bike and a big smile. I feel you have been more than a guide, more than a friend, you are more like a fairy!
Petra was a great guide around the literary corners of Maribor and beyond. Thank you for taking me to Varasdin with you, for that crazy stormy drive and electric chat. I’d like to read your poetry translated to Basque one day.
In Lent festival I was lucky enough to meet the incredible duo Tadej and Ino, and although they did not stay around for long (because they surprisingly preferred NY to MB) I can say our meeting was short and intense. I really hope to see you around soon. They introduced me to more amazing people in Maribor: the GCAS family. A big thank you for the interesting conferences, inspiring workshops and engaging discussions. We will meet each other again in Abu Dhabi, Turkey, USA or Greece! Through Gcas I got to know (and then spiritually marry) Pina – what united us in Piran under olive trees and bangles will go on and on and on… and whenever I am bathing on a tiny bathtub, on the murie or the lavorju I’ll think about our beautiful unity.
Thank you of course to all the waiters in Salon, Isabella and Piaf for always being smiley and never asking why I order a hot green tea on a hot summer day. And thank you to all the falafel, baklava and chocolate- thanks to you my sugar levels are happily over the rainbow.
If the baklava contributed to my high sugar levels, Mariborian poetry slammers have contributed to expanding my general culture knowledge. I felt ignorant sitting in your quiz nights, but it was a good humbling feeling that I genuinely enjoyed. The big event on the 19th is going to be ‘real’!
All the people that I met at the living library made my time here more special. Thank you for opening your hearts and being lovely. Thank you Poka for the incredible chai, the beers and the good times, if one day I move to India and become a Bollywood star I will ask you to become my manager! Thank you Sara for also introducing me to Filantropija and being an amazing pigeon feeder!
Filantropija has become my second home in Maribor. One of the brightest moments of my days has been walking into the office and seeing all your smiling faces. Thank you Urska for the work you are doing and thank you for letting me be part of it. I’ve loved spending my mornings making sand falafel with Mohamed, talking in English with Mhanna, trying to tame wild Amura, chatting about love with Sara, Deka and Houri, and having the super incredible Mihela around.
Thank you Luka for the fluorescent plankton at night and shooting stars, tomatoes and chocolate, afternoon siestas and long board rides, flowers and rivers.
Maribor you’ve NOT been Mariboring!