I bought a carpet. Second-hand. Online, from a private seller. Now I want to pick it up and I’m standing with my car in front of the seller’s house. It’s in a typical, rather run-down area in a large city in the Ruhr region. I think to myself, „It’s been a long time since I’ve seen a neighbourhood like this.“ We used to live like this ourselves for a long time.
Five southern-looking people are standing in front of the entrance. Two of their dogs bark briefly at me. „Fourth floor,“ Mrs P. had said. I ring the bell. „Hello?“ it sounds friendly from the intercom. „Hello, I’ve come for the carpet,“ I reply. „Oh yes. Come in. All the way up please.“ The buzzer sounds and I open the door. A typical stairwell in a fifties apartment block shows itself to me. Small tiles in the hallway. Linoleum on the steps and a wooden banister. I climb the stairs quickly. We once lived on the fourth floor ourselves. It’s always like that: Once you’ve reached the third floor, you always feel like you’ve arrived. But there is always another floor to go. This time it’s the same. After years, I’m on my way to the fourth floor again. I smile at this deja vú.
At the top, there is a small woman standing there. Short blonde hair. Not slim, but not fat either. Her face hidden behind a pink mask. „Well, you got up here all right,“ she says gently and kindly. „Yes,“ I say laughing „I wondered about that too.“ And I feel a huge wave of security. ‚A very great gentle feminine power. Real mother power.‘ it comes into my head. „It’s hard for me already.“ she says, „I’m over sixty too.“ „Over sixty? You don’t look it.“ I say, and watch her in front of my inner eye lug her shopping up the stairs. Arriving at the third floor. And then one more. ‚And she accepts that. She accepts it in her devotion to life.‘ ‚You’ve come a long way for that carpet now,‘ she notes gently and kindly. ‚Yes that’s true. But why not. I haven’t been to G. for a long time. It’s always an experience.“ I say a little jokingly. „Bad, isn‘t it?“ she says softly. And I feel her great sorrow. The pain that her great feminine soulful knowledge can’t compensate for. „Bad here, isn’t it? – And all the foreigners.“ We stand on the small landing under the roof. At the bottom of the stairs outside her door and I feel her loneliness. Her alienation from life. It’s not about the foreigners as foreigners in her words. It’s about her own torn down life. „Yes.“ I say „A different mentality. But things aren’t looking good in D. either. A lot of things are coming down. Poverty is increasing…“ „Bad, isn’t it?“ she says full of compassion and also her own suffering. And I feel how much this strangeness, this desolation hurts her. And how she can still accept the suffering of the other. She can almost heal. Only through her femininity, through her ability to accept. „It’s like that almost everywhere here,“ I say, „only in E. it’s even better there. There it looks even better. They’re still holding the flag a bit high,“ I say with a smile. She says quietly, „I’m actually from E. too. I want to go back too. It’s terrible here.“ It is a gentle statement. No aggression is present to her display of pain. „Then do that. And then have a nice ice cream by the lake at K.’s,“ I say kindly. „Yesterday we went to K’s for an ice cream.“ „Really?!“ I say, surprised.
„That was nice…“
We are still talking about the small carpet. It’s new. It just needs to get smooth again. It was rolled up for a long time. No problem, I say.
„I wish you all the best. Go back to E.!“ I say goodbye.
„I will. Have a good trip home too.“ she says.
I walk back down the stairs. There is a note on the inside of the front door. „Leave the house without slamming doors and loud talking!“ it says.
I feel sad. This is not a good thing. Nothing is good like this. How many of these people are there in our country alone? People so full of kindness, full of charity, full of feminine knowledge – and left so alone. Left at the end of the stairs on the top floor. People who know so much, who could contribute so much with the gentle knowing truth they carry – and who are simply forgotten…. This is not the world as it should be. No one should be so alone. No one who has so much to give must be so ignored, so uninvolved. And I’m not talking about the big bad world, where everything is supposedly the way it is, unfortunately, unfortunately. I’m talking about this country. About decisions that can be made in this country. Of visions that could be realised in this country, if…. Yes, if…. It is recognised again that the feminine is the only birthing force. And that it is the feminine that tells the masculine what to do and not the other way around. And that it is the masculine that must protect the feminine. That true chivalry must rise again. The chivalry that will drive out of this world the shame of wretched deceit and lies, of wretched selfishness, of this dirty business that soils every man inside.
Mrs. P. will not move to E. I don’t need to be a clairvoyant for that. She won’t be able to pay the rents there and will continue to stay in her garret under the sloping roofs in the run-down area of G.. Why? Because it is not intended that unnecessary expenses be created for people who do not bring in filthy lucre. Everyone has to see for himself. And if the healing, knowing woman cannot make a dirty, miserable, dead monetary contribution, then this person with his superfluous qualities is simply left to rot… Anything else would be communism… wouldn’t it? Doing something that is of use to others? God, uh money forbid! Only minimally. Just so these people don’t get any funny ideas from hunger. Peanut butter packets, I read, are the big success story in the third world. If you believe that, you should send your food to Africa and live off your peanut butter yourself. Then you will already see many things differently on the first evening. Probably already at breakfast.