People like us : Lata Brandisova

Look, I am from Republic of f*** Moldova.


I am from a tiny house, on a tiny street, walked by tiny people with shrunken bodies to match the tininess.

I remember big words floating around me : Russia, Chechnya, Jews, War, Communists, Hunger...coming out of people I know. These are my grandparents, parents, family they say.


I remember a tiny window. I used to look outside, into the backyard, the back of another small house. Next to the window my parents hang the alphabet. A for Arici, B for Broască.


I could feel through the wall of this house into the next one, into the whole town. I could hear all the stories, all the voices talking at the same time, crying at the same time, laughing and killing at the same time. I saw all the stories pouring out of their eyes into mine.

Stories everywhere, everything is talking. Talking to me.

Enough of it ! I would say. But then ...how could it be enough when I am... Moldova, I am all these voices, all these stories.


I decided to continue listening and share stories in my most natural way (writing). Once told, that is, once assigning meaning to something, the story is alive. And this is how life becomes a song.


I am going to tell stories of people I read about and maybe meet. People like us, living the same life, having to overcome more or less the same difficulties, during different times and circumstances. Difficulties, as we will see, are moments requiring a wider mind, a pure love for self and for people.

People who stay till the end of the story.


Let's start.


Here I am in modern Czechia reading about Czechoslovakia while my life seems to be disintegrating, finding out the story of Lata Brandisova- the first and only woman who won Velká pardubická.

The Grand Pardubice steeplechase is a dangerous horse race, it defines manhood. But Oh! look there is Lata B., a countess with a big heart, huge courage and pure love for horses, galloping over limits only a human mind can set on women, look she is winning the race. Not the first time she competed sure, but she did win.

How?

She tried.

Multiple times.

Why did she try? Because it was fun and her whole existence molded her into that. This is what happens when we allow life lead the way, it flows though us.




I am mostly interested in the days leading towards such a moment. A descending moment is as glorious as an ascending moment, you might come to understand one day. I have accompanied Lata from the very begging when she grew up having only horses for friends, when she had to lead a whole establishment and take care of the people working on the property as a very young woman, when she went racing for fun into the night, into the woods, when she won this amazing race, when she did not compete again. When she wasn't there anymore.

This book is amazing, I also got to know the Czech nobility, witnessed the arrival of the Nazis, the transformation of human beings into tools of death, into dead bodies, the human spirit giving into the false idea that what is seen is real. I have seen and listened to all of it.

Oh, the horse was called Norma.


End of story ?


There is no end to any story.


Until next time, I'll say this : make your story worth hearing it, in your own way.