Wednesday, February 25, 2009



Ledig House is a writers colony situated up-state New York in the valley of Hudson river. Here is my testimony of the marvelous time spend there with my colleagues.

Early morning - disturbed by concert of someone's snoring (is it Otto or is it me?).

7.30 -- Kathrin's alarm clock is ringing in the neighboring room. Kathrin is a German translator (if not mentioned particularly, all characters in this fairy-tale are Germans, Teutons or both) and she likes to work early -- did she read instructions for German translators posted on the wall in the kitchen? (Well, at least for the following 30 minutes I can lie in bed not feeling guilty that I don't like to work early).

8.00 -- Mathias (a poet) is up, I hear him (through the paper-walls) in the bathroom we are both sharing and assume he is doing the exact same things in the bathroom that ordinary people do, despite being a poet.

8.30 -- Exercise with music recorded from tapes I brought from home (not loudly -- Monica and Otto are still sleeping - you know, these translators at honeymoon...).

9.00 -- Find my way to the kitchen; somebody (home-keepers Peter or Kathleen?) already checked e-mail ("Nobody is writing to the colonel, nor to me").

9.30 -- Try to grab something from fridge before Monica comes to rob entire supply and will prepare a honeymoon breakfast for Otto (Oh Otto, how envious I am for those bagels you didn't finish yesterday morning!).

10.00 -- On e-mail, colleague and friend Andrej Blatnik is coming from Slovenia and needs some last minute secret information about the colony ("Take a racquet, man, tennis is what counts here").

10.30 -- E-mail connection is lost (Peter at the other part of this computer line needs to tell something to humankind as well).

10.30 - 1.00pm -- At the ill-installed PC ("this machine is unhappy" Peter said; what about me?) I am writing letters to editors through all of the States (meanwhile, I have killed 29 flies - this building is a former barn, with reconstruction cows left, flies didn´t).

1.00pm -- Lunch. Somebody stole the piece of famous lasagna made by our cook Donna for yesterday's dinner and spared for this day (you know, "hungry as a writer", we use to say back home). There is one creature more hungry than me -- a dog called Paris (fortunately, she is not a writer and we have a mutual, silent arrangement for most of the lunches; I eat and she looks at me as a bunch of Somali kids -- good training to remind me that writers always have to think about humankind, or at least about some kind of human).

2.00pm -- Reading newspapers and magazines, secretly cutting out the articles I expect to be helpful for my future essays (Peter is helplessly looking for yesterday's New York Times -- which I have completely cut already).

2.30pm -- Chatting with Josie in the kitchen. Today she responds to my Iowa pronounced question "Hawaria" (read "How are you?") with a word "fine" (means -- she slept not bad and there aren't many crackers left from our yesterday's dinner). On the way from Main House to my room one exotic look -- Uda, always hidden in her room, decided to appear at the public, walking down to the open-air sculptors park called "The Fields" like being hypnotized by the idea she recently translated.

2.45 -- 4.00pm -- Trying to convince "unhappy" PC that work is what make us all happy (meanwhile killed another 29 flies and heard some strange sounds from Dauji's room -- is this Indian poet here or again somewhere in the States on another of his mysterious missions?).

4.00 -- 5.30pm -- Tennis with Daniel (this son of a bitch doesn't know the art of losing, so he is almost always winning).

5.30 -- 6.00pm -- Shower (the doors to bathroom are unlockable, the window screen is missing -- Loren could fix it, but has no time -- he is shooting eggs. Well, I must to say that he is a passionate visual artist and actually obsessed by the idea to shoot eggs by the gun and in the same time to shoot the visual effect of it by highly speed camera. See results in dining room).

6.00 -- 7.00pm -- Back in Reynold's cottage to print out something important for humankind, but apparently not appealing enough for America's editors (what kind of humans are they?!). Another German writer Gert appears in hall to send his messages through a fax socket (Gert is a good companion for the start of evening - he and his Danish Vodka + Snickers!).

7.00 -- 8.00pm -- Ready for dinner writing e-mails in Library (got three, sent five with hope for geometrical growing effect).

8.00 -- 9.30pm -- Dinner (key words here are "pass it, please"; the Ledig House dinners are the most "passable" dinners in my life; sitting always in the middle of the table I barely succeed to eat). Good wine, good chat, newcomer = executive director David Knowless.

9.30 -- 10.30pm -- David's executive idea to storm Turnpike bar had been approved. Turnpike was stormed, but actually on this day they are closed (how much does one executive director have to know or does he "know-less" than we do?), apparently weak in his knees David is promising another Turnpike storm, bowling and more (looking forward to more).

10.30 -- 12.30pm -- Watching video ("The good, the bad and the ugly" or the "The Apostle" or...) with others in sitting room (Paris is gnawing and playing with big bone under table -- horrible sounds).

12.30pm -- Ready to sleep. In night disturbed by concert of someone's snoring (is it Otto or is it me?).

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