Sunday, 5 October 2014

Oriocenter: Unrustled

YashicaMat 124G / Fuji Superia Xtra
Those meerkats done bad. Now they dead.

The Oriocenter is a large shopping mall adjacent to Bergamo Airport, named after the village of Orio al Serio, which has essentially been obliterated by the airport and subsumed into Bergamo itself. How many other blogs have the words obliterated and subsumed and adjacent in the opening sentence? Not many.

Airports are a bit like the alien from Alien, they tend to burst villages and towns from within, leaving behind a ravaged corpse and some shreds of bloodied flesh.

Snails also.

The Oriocenter is a popular diversion for passengers waiting for a flight; it's a short walk from the airport. Every time I have been there my medication was packed away in my bags, but the elevators and benches have a soothing effect. Most recently there were multi-coloured meerkats and snails hanging from the ceiling, and fish, as if they had been crucified in the manner of Jesus Christ, and yet they were plastic meerkats. To paraphrase Bill Hicks, they saw the truth, these plastic meerkats, and they realised that life is just a ride, and when they tried to pass on their message we hanged them.

I remember wondering if there are more advanced consciousnesses in the universe than our own; consciousnesses so advanced that we seem like ants to them. Are we just highly-advanced bit players in their dream? Could we cheat death by persuading them to absorb our minds into theirs? Can they advance the speed of thought to such a degree that the remaining span of the universe - which must be finite - would appear to stretch into infinity? None of the shop staff in the Oriocenter could answer these questions, which I had difficulty formulating in Italian, and in any case I had to catch a plane.