A year and a month after our first trip together to Venice (Italy), also on the national holiday of the Revolution and War of Independence of 1848-49 (15 March), just a few days after the state of emergency declared by the Hungarian government came into effect due to the pandemic emerged from the spread of SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus that causes COVID-19 disease, which was soon followed by curfew restrictions that still remain now, with Irina by my side I attempted to expand the perceptibly narrowing frames, both in time and space.

Here comes the result as my bookmark to the history of our untold self-quarantine diary still being written day-to-day.


’Never forget just one thing: the world is also a terrible distorting mirror. … You can’t expect to have a single person in the world who understands and explains your actions exactly as you had thought before. You are the only one who knows what you really wanted; the world can always understand and see that much from your intentions that the mysterious distorting mirror of the human mind perceives and reflects.’

Sándor Márai | Book of Herbs | About the World and Distortion


’These days, when the world is so far away, with everything that is experience, attraction, movement, or interest in it that I look almost curiously at everything that can get pain, as a patient undergoing local anesthesia can watch the knife and the doctor’s movements during surgery. Well, just cut it, I think. And when I say a sentence, I look after it like an anesthetized patient can look back at their spilled blood.’

Sándor Márai | Four Seasons | Distance


’A day in March, when I don’t go out of the darkened room, and behind the shutters pulled down, among work, pottering and peddling about, I can feel that something out there is being made that’s a little unclean, grungy and sweet, a bit like clotted blood, strident and stunned, spottedly colourful and flashyly ordinary, and the sunrays penetrate the world’s giggling body like a golden vaccination lancet that gives poppy and caffeine to everything that is body and tissue at the same time. What an adventure! – I think. And I pull the curtains together.’

Sándor Márai | Four Seasons | Adventure


’These are the days that don’t have names and addresses in the calendar, and yet we feel that they’re red-letter days: the days of farewell, when we realize we’ve got rid of something, a condition, a stage in life that was confusing and dangerous, difficult and trying, and now, at once it ends, and something else begins in its place, a new version of life that might get better. What are we saying goodbye to these days? We don’t know it exactly. Everything is as it was yesterday, just as incomprehensible and hopeless – and yet something, a shadow or a trick has disappeared from life, and we start to breathe. This feeling is celebrated by the wild with dances. It’s true, that so do we.’

Sándor Márai | Four Seasons | Farewell

‘Keep the faith

Don’t lose your head’

Marillion | Afraid of Sunlight

Find your moments of grace at krisztiantota.com

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