Tag Archives: bosnia

(no)words enough to communication

bosnian-train-man1

So here I start my English thoughts. And I ask myself how to make myself be understood by people who are not native English speakers, reminding that I’m not neither. We may all be lost in translation… And what occurs me is that many wars may start exactly in this point… by the other hand I’ve learned that not understanding words it’s not a limit to communication.
Sharing personal experiences…
Banja Luka 1:40a.m.
I wait for a train to Sarajevo.
It’s cold, very cold. It’s raining for the past couple of days.
I say good bye to Branco (another chapter in this story) and go into the train with a few other men.
I walk through the wagon till I find a cabin with open curtains. The one I found it’s totally empty… and very cold.
I’m very tired so I lay down.
I’m dressed with all my warm clothes, but I’m still shaking.
I cover myself with the raincoat of my backpack, but I still shake.
I try to sleep, but the most I can get is a sleepy stage.
I can hear the sound of some men laughing drunk next door.
I see the dark landscape.
I hear the sound of the train friction. Yes, I fell a bit scared…
4a.m.
An old man in uniform say something in Serbian-crotioan. I don’t understand the words but I can safely assume that he’s asking for my ticket.
He gets my ticket and says something else that I don’t understand.
He leaves.
I close my eyes again trying to go back to sleep. I’m shivering.
The man shows up again, grab one of my bags and make a gesture telling me to go with him.
He opens another cabin door. This one is empty as well, but it’s very warm.
6a.m.
The kind man show up again saying something. All I could say was: “da. Hvala�. A few minutes latter he appears with a coffee with milk. Sit down in the seat in front of me, cross his legs, light up a cigarette and start talking to me.
Once more, I don’t understand his works, but our conversation goes for 20 minutes and, beyond of the meaning of the words, the truth wish to know each other, who’s this unknown person who needed to be save and how’s this unknown person who, dismissed of charge, help someone he never saw or will see again.
Unknown is the complexity of the human being.
How can we all be so dual?
Would this man be as kind as he was with me if I was a man? If I wear muslin clothes or if my backpack had a Croatian flag?  Would he help me if he were in pain for some reason or if he had just lost someone he love? Would he help me if we sees me everyday? Is there a quote for kindness?
Besides of all the “ifs�, that day I was just a human being, and so was him, besides of labels or personal needs.
I wish I could thank him somehow but I’m sure life will take care of that.