city

Welcome to Silent Hill


Fascination is what I felt after looking in the window after getting up today: all city is covered with fog and it looks freaking magical.

Cabs stuck in traffic jams, people taking a leap of faith when running across the road having green light in front of them, cab company operators hating their job beause of rising amounts of dissatisfied clients (I was one of them this time) – these are some of the most memorable moments of today’s morning.

The temperature isn’t too low, I almost dropped my redbull because of the freezing hand only once, and it’s a good sign 🙂

Having the office on the 17th floor, we’re sitting here like it’s Silent Hill; all foggy and weird people hanging around. The look from the window is great: you can’t see almost anything. Baiterek is approximately 200-300 meters away from us and we can’t see it from here. The only images visible at the moment are feeble silhouettes of colorful buildings which now look as grey as everything else. All that gives a feeling of peace. The fog is so dense that I feel like I can touch it if I get my hand outside.

The time flies by. Only one week left of October, which means that soon it’ll be 2 months since I started working at ‘company_name’. And yeah, my birthday is only 2 weeks away. In 2 weeks I can bake myself a nice chocolate cake, get a bottle of wine, buy an aroma candle, light it up, and sing myself a ‘Happy birthday’ song. I don’t know if it’s so bad, but now that I think about this way of ‘celebrating’ my birthday, it doesn’t look too bad. Am I THAT antisocial? I gotta admit, chocolate, wine and an aroma candle can be great companions sometimes. Let’s see if I’ll be spending that day with them or find something more socially acceptable to do. The time will show.

Now I just need to make sure I stay alive and don’t get slaughtered in this all-absorbing silent hill atmosphere…

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Little things


Sometimes you look outside the window and see it.

Everything around is as ugly as it can ever get: that mixture of construction sites and shiny polished ‘wannabe skysrapers’. All of that makes me want to turn my guts inside out; and yet there’s something about it. Something fascinating, something that makes me like looking at city lights at night from the window.

Sometimes I find it interesting to watch the fight of ash dark thunder sky and mottled building roofs; fierce clouds  act like they want to devour rooftops, rain drains from them like saliva of a hungry animal, and the mighty roar echoes in the most remote corners of this overfilled land.

My brain is constantly struggling between sending everything to hell and falling down from the 14th floor facing the roadway, and peacefully contemplating the flickering lights of Baiterek. What’s making the struggle keep on? Why haven’t I already made a choice in favor of the roadway? Who the ff*** knows.

Those little things… the little things that make me want to forget that I hate it all; ones that make me want to forget about the self-destruct process that was initialized long ago, and even if I still remember about it, they make me want to push the ‘pause’ button.

I’ve started noticing small details that enchant me; they give me thoughts that I later turn into poems, or that make me frozen for half of the day. They leave a strange aftertaste, and I still can’t understand what it is. Something elusive, something addictive, something that keeps me puzzled. Hell, I’m always puzzled. Always.

The city of empty costumes, or stuff that makes me wanna translate till I drop


Interesting things are happening around me. I’m extremely lucky to find racist people, weird landlords, and taxi drivers with a good sense of humor 🙂

First, when I started looking for a new place to stay, I got hundreds of phone numbers to call. 6 out of 10 dropped the call as soon as they found out that I wasn’t Kazakh. The rest told me that they need someone urgently (and I couldn’t more in right away due to financial issues and needed to wait until the begining of August), and couldn’t wait. Awesome.

Over the past 2 weeks I had to go to the right bank a lot (last week – workhop) and I ended up coming back late, so I took a cab on my way back almost every time that happened. Almost all the drivers were fun people who started either talking about Astana, or just making witty remarks on everyday mundane life. The jokes were old, but somehow it felt good hearing them, for a moment there they made me feel like I didn’t live in such a rotten place.

And yeah, I finally got my working contract with out project director’s signature on it. I was actually surprised to see a year-long contract, because the administration told me they’d hire me for 3 test months and we’d have only a 3-month long contract first. And there I sat and read that the contract expiration date is in a year; and it made me feel like I can translate 24/7, 365 days a week. Good way of motivating your worker to work till late; good job, ‘company_name’, good job.

About the right bank… Last night I went to visit a friend of mine because she felt lonely in the big apartment where she temporarily lived. The apartment was kind of cozy, with a small kitchen and a ‘good old Soviet view from the window’. Haven’t had a nice girly talk in a homely atmosphere for a long time.

The most interesting part was getting to work next morning. Catching a taxi was one thing; the traffic jams were something that I will never forget, because that’s when I realized that I won’t ever look for a place to live on the right bank. Well, as I’ve mentioned earlier, I’m lucky to meet fun taxi drivers, sdo the one from today morning wasn’t an exception. 2 girls discussing cars and automobile taxes in Kazakhstan with a middle-aged man, who complained about his wife’s shopping addiction in breaks between the traffic lights 😀

As I look at all that it makes me wonder why the ff*** I’m doing in this city, because I could have had a much calmer life back home. But then, I get to work, and I stop thinking about it because this work takes almost all of my freaking time!!!

Hah, well, let the Gods bless my job and my survival in the city or empty costumes; everything else I can do on my own.

Rotten ghosts in suits


Shiny streets, sparkling buildings,

Bright colors are hitting the eyes.

Walls of the city can’t hold anymore,

They’ve stretched enough;

Rotten people with empty eyes

Keep wandering around,

Trying to look busy.

I’m in the middle of the street,

Ghosts of former happiness

Are wearing suits.

Wind is flapping the fabric.

Hair has covered my face,

But I don’t need to see what I already know.

I’m surrounded by empty space,

The air is rotting,

And so am I,

Along with the windy overfilled village.