Today is my husband´s birthday and after what happened he just wants to forget the day. “I don´t feel like celebrating. This day isn´t important anymore.“ I´ve been hearing this for a while now and understand that he doesn´t want a party. But I disagree when he says the day isn´t important, so I convince him to go on an outing to Bitterfelder Meer, an old strip mine which has been flooded and turned into a lake. Nature and man have reclaimed the region destroyed by mining, and it has become a hip tourist attraction. There´s a harbour with a beach promenade, lined with gingko trees and restaurants.
The air and sun do us good. A deep blue butterfly flutters back and forth up ahead and stays with us. It doesn´t seem to want to leave. And suddenly a thought shoots into my head and anchors itself in my mind: “Is it perhaps Jens? Is he contacting us because it´s my husband´s birthday?“ Right away I brush the idea aside. “That´s rubbish! Dead is dead, Jens is gone!“
Some part of my brain rebels. “Go with it and see what happens. What don´t you like about the idea?“ The bright daylight illuminates the butterfly and it glows in all shades of blue. I am delighted. It´s beautiful.
“It would be great if he would stay with us, even if in the form of a butterfly. He´s saying hello to us. I´m sure!“ All at once I´m convinced.
It´s still hovering in front of us and I greet it wordlessly. “Hello Jens.“ A comforting feeling comes over me.
It´s a pity that it eventually disappears into the shrubbery beside us.
“That´s not real! Am I becoming schizophrenic?“ I chase the thoughts away with a forceful wave of my hand …
Sun, light, the spring green of the plant world, the light wind – it all does us good.
My husband even liked the outing and we decide to experience nature more often. It´s pleasant to fill our lungs with fresh air and enjoy the light, especially when the sun is shining.
Bitter reality sinks in when we get home to find the first preliminary report from the French Civil Aviation Safety Agency (BEA) on our computer, waiting to be opened and read. We´ll have all the time in the world for that tomorrow.
Today is my husband´s birthday and we go down to the milk bar for some delicious ice cream.
© Brigitte Voß / Translation: Ellen Rosenbaum