I’m very shaken (or I should be, given the circumstances). What I’m for sure is confused. I’m afraid I’m not yet able to tell you what’s going on. I drafted these lines inside a military car, in my way to my parents’ house, and I don’t even know whether it was so very nice of them bothering to take me there or whether the only reason they didn’t kick me into that car is that I was sufficiently compliant.
The train arrived to Stuttgart early in the morning. I had been able to sleep for a few hours and I woke up as we were going through the suburbs. It was cloudy and also very foggy, I felt fully immersed in a continuous lack of definition, especially when I stepped off the train. Once I was inside the fog it became easier to discern the other passengers heading towards the exit stairs and the ones standing, waiting. The sun was muted right over the trees outside of the station, a wonderful pastel orange sprawling into greyish yellows that melted naturally with the ugly screen of clouds and fog.
As I put my backpack down to get my scarf, four soldiers surrounded me. Three of them were holding their rifles with both hands and directing the muzzles at me. The fourth one, the one in charge (considering he had more paraphernalia on his cap and jacket, including some small but ridiculous golden tassels hanging from his shoulders), asked for my passport. His unpleasant and rusty voice and his impersonal face coerced my hand into finding and handling the passport before I could assess the value of protesting his demand. After glancing at my passport, the tasseled commander slipped it into one of his pockets and ordered me to follow them. One of the soldiers seized my backpack and the other two strengthened the grasps on their rifles. I asked “follow you where?” and I demanded to have my passport back. The commander got closer to me and yelled “silence” and “you are to follow us” and “I don’t recommend you say a word”, those sort of things. His breath wasn’t offensive, but it carried the smell of coffee and hints of cinnamon and bacon, which reminded me that I hadn’t eaten anything since the previous night. Thinking about food: obviously, my stomach didn’t consider the current situation too alarming. In any case, I decided not to ask whether I could go to the cafeteria to buy some quick breakfast. Instead, as the commander started to move towards the stairs, I followed him, the three soldiers walking behind me. The people around us on the platform must have heard what happened, but they pretended we weren’t there, they kept looking at the fog, I’m sure that waiting until we left so that they could stand at ease.