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2020 - Stewardess at the time of the cor

Stewardess at the Time of the Coronavirus


Today I flew from Berlin to Budapest on the invite of the LuppArt Artist Residency Programme. I had

such a strange feeling, having to fly at the time of Corona. Many people had gathered up at the

airport since they were checking people’s bags at a snail’s pace. As if there was no Corona pandemic,

but they were looking for a bomb. Those about to fly were treading on one another’s necks in

serpentine lines. It lasted exceedingly long; I was gasping for air under my level 3 mask. It began as an

unpleasant journey.

I bumped into Krisztina at the gate, her mother had died and that is why she came to Budapest. She

was about to cry; the news bore down on her greatly. We agreed we would get a taxi together and

said goodbye.

At last, we could board the plane. I bought a ticket at the front, in the second row. As soon as I went

through the door, my eyes were struck by the lovely gaze of one of the stewardesses. The other one

was young, slender, and tall, having the figure of a model, intelligent, with glasses and huge pupils.

Still, I was drawn to the shorter one. I quickly took my place, fortunately no one sat next to me, so I

could turn enough. When the plane started, I noticed that for a few moments my eyes met with

those of the stewardess with the charming gaze. I was pretending to just look around, up and down,

to the right and left, with the Corona-mask on my face. But it kept drawing me back, like a magnet,

this beautiful, clear gaze. Only our eyes were visible, but those were radiating to one another with

full force. The girl began to introduce the security system, standing two meters away from me. She

took her blazer off, so that her sensitive, soft figure revealed itself even more. Her slender hands

swimming in the air like snakes, she delivered her programme with ballet movements. I got more and

more perceptive of her. Suddenly, in the middle of the performance her eyes stopped on me, as if

they had left her soul and only her body kept moving and doing her job. Her gaze seemed infinite.

Our gazes met again multiple times during the flight.

As the plane was getting ready to land above Budapest, all of a sudden fantastic cloud formations

marched in front of my window. It was strikingly magical. I took a photo with my mobile phone, as if I

wanted to tell the girl, how beautiful it was. She could not see it from her seat. I looked back at her,

while she was sitting in front of the pilots’ entrance in the dim light, and she was looking at me too.

Then my eyes wandered onto the older, over nourished pilot-passenger sitting in the row opposite

mine, who kept sizing up the girl’s body, like a product. My heart was about to break, I would have

liked to build a wall in front of this lecher’s stare. Of course, I am not a young man either, but at first,

I did not want to acknowledge, that I was giving an eye to the girl. I thought this was just sympathy.

But I was seized by some sort of astronomical process, I felt as if two planets were circuiting each

other, pulling each other closer and closer. The plane landed with a calm quietness and it started on

the field towards the place where we would exit. The sky had darkened and it had started to rain, the

lights were not on in the plane, everything was swimming in a soft dimness, everyone stayed at their

places until we could exit. I looked around me, as the people were sitting ready to leave, and I

realised all of a sudden, that the girl’s eyes were shining towards me and I was looking at her too,

pondering, fixated. Everything around us got blurred. Two pairs of eyes in eternity, turning into

photographs. We fused, with faces lacking mimics, since the mask was covering that. Through our

eyes we fused magnetically, we fell through a dark hole into another universe. It was so unexpected,


it felt so nice, I did not even think about how this story could continue. I stood up and reached for my

bag in the shelf above, when a woman behind me started. I squeezed myself against the seat and let

her go. In the meantime, my eyes got stuck on the girl again, as she was looking at me with her

warm, smiling eyes, but I had to get out, because the others were advancing from behind. Greeting

her with a banal “ciao” I slipped by, very closely, but not even looking back at her, almost flying

towards the airport bus. That is when it clicked: we had not even exchanged addresses, I had not

asked her out for coffee. How could I have? The whole thing seemed so unlikely, at the same time

realistically catching. At times like that I wish there were always such harmonic moments lacking all

expectations between people. Should I start investigating about who that girl is, and attempt to get

to her? Perhaps that would ruin everything. This way a nice feeling remains in my heart forever. If

destiny wanted more, we would find each other again, for sure.


26. July 2020.                                                                                                        Tibor Soskuti

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