Maybe it is time to leave this town. The streets are moist, the trees are bald, the sky is grey and the wind always comes from the front. Maybe this will be my last winter here, for real. No more empty eyed people, staring out of the scratched train windows, contemplating on their daily struggles, their boss, their bills, their relationships. It seems as if they are having serious existential worries, but no-one looks up as the homeless guy asks for some change or at least a smile, not even myself.
The steel woman raises her robotic voice: “Landsberger Allee”, finally. I let my thumb stroke along the sharpened edges of my kicktail. My index finger flicks the green ABEC11 NoSkoolz. I can hear the ceramic bearings rattling, freshly oiled. A slight jolt rolls through the wagon as the train comes to stop. Doors slide open, cold air streams in, my board jumps out.
Without touching the ground I glide over to the stairs of the station and pause for a moment. In the distance I can hear the rolling and clashing sounds of whirling skateboards. It reminds me of crashing ocean waves washing through the dusty car park on the other side of the street. My excitement makes me smile and as I look back to the train I see the homeless guy, smiling back at me. The doors close.
I let the anger and frustration, that gathered up during the day, travel from my guts down to my foot. Forceful and furious I push my board forward, whipping it to go faster, to go further, away from this depressing day and towards a bright however brief moment of relief.
I see my friends waving from within the concrete construction. They are sweaty, maybe drunk, and certainly high. I push even faster, tuck down and roll in wavy lines towards them. As my right foot places itself automatically on the kicktail, I bend my knees and check if my left foot is in the right position. “This is it”, I think to myself, “the first trick of the session sets the mood.”
Pictures of Berlin’s winter flash past my eyes. The moist streets, the bold trees, the grey sky, the empty eyes, the homeless guy, the grey sky again. I readjust my back-foot slightly and try to envision the trick that I´m going to do, Kickflip! With one vigorous kick I slam down the tail and swipe upwards with the outside of my front-foot. The “Pop” sounds perfectly round and my board launches into the air, following my feet like an obedient wooden dog.
“Without thinking my left foot flicks the outer edge of my board and causes it to flip along its spine.”
Without thinking my left foot flicks the outer edge of my board and causes it to flip along its spine. Everything stops, freezes and moves in slow-motion. I see the bright reflections of my griptape shimmering like a thousand stars laid upon the firmament, I now understand the name “Diamond-Griptape”. With enchanted eyes I trace the dots of the few star-signs I know. Taurus, Leo, the big dipper and many unknown figures become apparent on the broad and gripping night-sky underneath my feet.
Slowly the dark-side of my board tilts over and makes room for the big sun-graphic on the bottom of the deck. Everything starts to illuminate as the bright graphics and the scattered patches of colourful stickers come to surface. Like a sunrise, my deck bursts out thick streaks of light and saturates every dark corner of the car park with deep, vibrant coats of colour. My eyes squint and a warm tingle rushes from my feet up to my head, causing my cold thoughts to melt into a silent sea and releasing me into the subtle high feeling of stoke. Everything dissolves into one, big multicoloured blur and I am certain, that the whole city can see the spectacle of my kickflip like fireworks on the horizon.
“My eyes squint and a warm tingle rushes from my feet up to my head, causing my cold thoughts to melt into a silent sea and releasing me into the subtle high feeling of stoke.”
Maybe I will never leave this town. The streets are smooth, the trees are tall, the sky is… bright, since all it needs for the sun to shine are my feet on the board and a good ride through Berlin’s winter, as if summer has never ended. It can be so easy.
The board spins too far, my feet entangle with the trucks and I land on my face. Holding my bleeding chin I look over to my friends, and we burst out laughing.
About the author
Sydney swirls around inbetween the two worlds of Philosophy and Skating. With dancing feet and a heavy head he skates his way through the mysteries of life. He is an intergalactic traveller on four wheels, trying to land the cosmic trick called “truth”.