The diary of a rebel (or how I refused to sign my Communist Youth Union membership card)

by Viviana on March 16, 2012

in Personal

These are stories from my childhood. I am now 38, so I grew up in communism. I will publish a lot of stories, more or less related to communism. In fact, they are all related to communism in Romania. This is the first chapter.

I open my eyes. Both my grandparents are snoring like trains.

My Granny and I share a bed. My grandfather sleeps in a separate bed that he had built for himself. I was very proud of him when he finished that bed. I was equally impressed when he built a real sewer in our courtyard. I could feel the pride he felt, so I was proud. Every night before I fall asleep my Granny pets my hair. Or strikes my hands and forearms. She makes me very sleepy when she does that. She pets my arms very slowly going up and down my forearms. Sometimes I tell her to go back to a spot that gives me goosebumps. The worst part is when her fingers start moving more and more slowly and I know that she is falling asleep first. Then I kick her and she says: What? And I find it very funny. She forgets where she is, probably has a dream or two, so she comes back to petting my arms violently. Sometimes she slaps me and I don’t ask for more petting.

It’s early. The light comes in through our huge windows, crawling like a thief. That is the image I immediately create in my mind and I promise myself to write it down in my poetry notebook. I love writing poetry. As long as it keeps me away from doing endless boring homework.

Granny starts moving. She grunts. I know the cocoa milk time is near. As usual I will pretend I am a spoiled child and she will carry me in her arms, from the bed to the table. I cannot remember how Granddad disappears every morning, but I cannot remember seeing him much in the morning. He goes to bed last and wakes up first I guess.

So Granny goes downstairs, to the kitchen, and prepares the “lovely” breakfast I loathe from the bottom of my being. I hate the smell of milk, I even hate hearing her heavy steps as she comes back, plate in hand and cup on top of plate. By the time she arrives from the kitchen, the milk has changed its initial state of matter from liquid to mucilaginous. Semicreamy sticky rags of milk float at the surface, making it impossible to drink. So I have to gulp and eat the milk to the last drops. At the bottom of the cup there lies the best part I am never going to have: the cocoa that somehow between the kitchen and the room goes down fast and creates a thin brown front that laughs at me at the end of my ordeal. One day I will have a spoon in hand and show it! (to be continued)

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