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Silent Screams, Runs, Passing By a Protest and Hovering Around Another

Quite a crash two days ago, the noise from the construction work nearby waking me around 9 AM and not letting me quite sleep again until I eventually got up, even if that was after 1 PM. Just kept nodding off and then waking again, being confused and miserable, even though it was just drilling and hammering and shouting and stuff being thrown straight down outside, so not like when neighbors do it and there’s no escaping it. The problem was that, while the windows may have mostly solved the problem if they’d have all been closed, only the one in my room was, so the noise was flooding in from all other parts of the apartment and getting to my room the other way around.
Meant to go out even earlier to try to get away from it, but eventually only did just before 5 PM, sort of wandering in the general direction of two protests scheduled to start at 7 PM, one at the University Square fountain and the other in front of the Turkish Embassy. That embassy is quite far to walk to, however, so I ended up wandering around the Old Town instead, checking out the used book stores there, plus having a quick glance at an antique fair I happened to stumble into.
No money on me, the situation from that point of view being really bad lately, so I haven’t gotten any in about a month now and have to make do with what is bought otherwise, that also being less and, shall we say, far more restricted in most ways than before, so I was obviously just looking as I was wandering around there, but did keep a few things in mind for the future. Don’t think I checked out any but one of those places again on my own, so the last time I as much as stepped inside the rest probably was when I met Andreea and we checked them out back in 2010.
Either way, after wandering around a bit longer, I eventually did walk past the fountain at about 7:25 PM, but that’s all I did, not staying at the protest for LGBT rights triggered by the fact that the Constitutional Court had just ruled that the initiative to change the Constitution in order to explicitly state that marriage is only between one man and one woman and therefore block any potential future legalization of gay marriage is constitutional and can therefore move to the next step, which is the debate and vote in the Parliament. Didn’t spot known activists there at a glance and only one of those I follow had shown explicit support, while the gendarmes were present in large numbers compared to the number of protesters and their positioning and posture made it clear they weren’t going to allow the event to continue, which the few articles I read later that evening confirmed.
After that, I got back here, eventually crawled back in bed, managed to nap for about an hour, then needed close to 30 minutes more to drag myself out of bed, but only for a few seconds, because then I crawled right back in and pretty much fell apart just because I kept hearing crickets from outside and my parents talking in the kitchen. Screaming internally that I just wanted everything to be quiet and leave me be, while at the same time still needing someone and to cuddle as much as ever, but I didn’t actually make as much as a sound and doubt I even moved. Just pulled the sheet over my head and sat there quiet and motionless while feeling like I was about to explode because the rest of the world, or at least the bit of it in my immediate vicinity, wasn’t.

Ran twice this week again, since it seems it’ll be too hot to go during the day the next. Tuesday my stomach was complaining about running after eating a fair bit of watermelon, so I picked a comfortable target time and completed the seven kilometers in 35:40, with sector times of 4:33, 5:24, 6:12, 4:43, 5:22, 6:22 and 3:04, making for lap times of 16:09 and 16:27. Watch actually showed 32:35.96, if I remember correctly, at the end of the second lap, but I’m using 32:36 because for once I actually pressed the button just before getting to the line I take as the end of a lap, paying more attention to another person in front of me.
As for yesterday, I meant to run until I dropped, since I was still feeling the effects of the previous evening’s crash and hoped I could at least work some of that out if I got to the point of simply being unable to keep walking after finishing. But I wasn’t sure whether I wanted to try to get under 34 minutes on seven kilometers again or try ten again, aiming to get under 52 minutes, and ended up taking it quite slowly again and sort of going for the second option but never actually deciding on it until I finished two laps and me and a cyclist coming from the opposite direction got into that awkward dance of trying to get out of each other’s way and failing to until we changed direction I think four times.
With my mind being on that, once I got past him I found myself about to go past the base of the slope I climb on for the final sector of the seven-kilometer route and next thing I knew I was climbing on it, having apparently decided not to go for ten kilometers after all, even though my time until that point gave me a chance to hope to even get below 51 minutes, not only 52. But, instead of that, I just covered seven kilometers again, in 35:38, with sector times of 4:40, 5:27, 6:14, 4:33, 5:14, 6:19 and 3:11, making for lap times of 16:21 and 16:06. Obviously, I was very far from dropping, so did nothing about the other issue.

At least in part because of that, I then decided to attend the second silent, “standing man” protest scheduled to take place in front of the Turkish Embassy. Wasn’t sure about it, but since I didn’t do much with the run, said I’ll at least try to do something else that day, though the plan was to stay on the other side of the road and take pictures at first, then see how things play out and decide whether I’ll actually join the silent protesters later.
Well, I didn’t stay on the other side of the road, crossing it after just a few minutes to stay right in front of the embassy as well, but that was all I did, as I didn’t actually take part, only taking a few pictures. Also filmed a few moments, but my camera corrupted every single video, with too little being saved properly to make any of them useful for anything. Still got carded by the gendarmes, of course, but just for being in an area that requires increased security, and I did point out I’m not actually taking part and the gendarme said he noticed that as well.
Feeling quite embarrassed about it, actually being there and yet not taking part in spite of everything that’s happening and the need for at least a few people to show they’re aware it’s unacceptable and need to react in some way, but… Still too afraid of another fine, plus that it feels strange when the otherwise sizable Turkish community here has so far been notable in its lack of reaction, with the unfortunate exception of something of a counter-protest staged by a group that I heard was mostly made up of embassy staff, plus a few other supporters of Erdogan, during Wednesday’s first silent protest.
I know that those who’d want to oppose him and his actions are currently afraid of the repercussions, even here, from others in the community as well as from actual agents of the regime, and especially if they have close friends and relatives still in Turkey, but it feels strange to stand against the abuses and dictatorial regime in a country when the significant number of immigrants from that country and their families fail to react in any visible way. I mean, back in 2013, when the Gezi Park protests started, we were first a handful of Romanians supporting the protest of the Turkish community, which had come out in support of the protesters back there, and then a rather even split of Romanians and Turks in front of the embassy, while now they’re nowhere.

But I probably wrote too much about the protest above, since I’m thinking a post about that should be this week’s second one and now there’s little else left to say. But I’ll see whether something else will happen today and maybe also tomorrow and then post a “protest update” tomorrow or Sunday, possibly also including one other bit of information that was released today, on an entirely different topic. Until then, this is already long enough and I keep falling behind on reading that book.


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