I write to you because I want to share the experience of one of my travels, even if the trip I want to talk about has some particular features. We can travel together in the past, if you want, and I’ll show you in the best way possible everything I saw, everything I discovered, everything I felt. But in order to do this, dear traveler, I must ask you to believe that traveling in time is possible. I know for sure that it is and I’m gonna show you how.. follow me!
Arad, November 30th 2015.
Cold. Morning. Friends. Hitchhiking… Timisoara. Visiting. Centru. Eating. Funny. Glad. Afternoon. Cold… Walking. Cold. Strada Laszlo Szekely, Nr 1. Cold. Bar-theatre-museum – Scârţ loc lejer. Hot.
We walked up some stairs, hidden between two buildings, which led to the entrance of the bar. As soon as we entered I was immediately impressed by the multicolored umbrellas which were decorating the ceiling and by the warm and friendly environment I could feel. After a really fast tour of the rooms, we found the owners, who didn’t have a real bar behind which they stay, but they were just sitting at the tables, speaking and joking with the customers, and we asked for the Communism Museum.
Now, my dear reader, be careful because here starts the travel back into the past. But a particular time travel because we don’t need any Time Machine. It is not a fantastic dream. And we aren’t even in a science fiction movie. None of this. Imagine that we were just there, that cold afternoon of 30th of November 2015, following one of the owners until the stairs which led to the museum. It has just been necessary to walk down those steps for some seconds that suddenly the doors which linked us to the present closed behind us and we found ourselves in front of a huge space where we could move free, touching, reading or just feeling the past Romanian times. That past time of the Cold War, where the world was separated in two, the capitalistic “West” led by America on one side, and the communist “East” led by Soviet Union on the other. That past time when Ceaușescu was leading Romania. That time that passed, but which however we were experiencing and discovering in our present.
Strange, isn’t it? It was 2015, but it could have been like living in 1976, or, why not, in 1980, or maybe in 1985. 1985, the year I really plunged into and that I “lived” somehow, day by day, reading scrupulously pages by pages that calendar, hung on that white wall of that apartment.
Yes, the museum was an old flat which hosted furniture of the communist time.
As I said, we could walk freely, play with the toys that 40 years ago had been the fantasies of some children, touch pictures representing happy moments of some families, sit on chairs where someone sat for 10, 20, 35 years or more (who knows?), play old instruments, dig through school books, pencils, pencil-cases and desk tidies of some students who now are somewhere in the world carrying on their lives, read books, old newspapers or simple papers where a mother wrote the shopping list, a kid his maths homework, and another one the letter for Santa Claus, together with his dreams.
In the end, dear reader, we lived one hour of that day back in the past. At least, the feeling that I had when we walked up the stairs again was the same of when my grandmother finished telling me a story, when I was a child: I came back to reality. In the same way I went out from that travel in the past, but this time it was not like the stories of my grandmother, when I created a complete different world with my imagination. This time I, we, “physically” traveled in time, coming back to a period of our past which is still alive there, in that wonderful apartment full of history. And it is waiting for you, my dear reader…
In the meantime I greet you from here in Scârţ, Strada Laszlo Szekely, Nr 1, Timisoara, drinking a beer, speaking with the owner and enjoying our stories listening an old piano playing the soundtrack of our conversation.