“Do you have an emergency contact?” the lady from Avianca Airlines at the airport in Arequipa asked.

I had to think. And then, sadly realizing how alone I was in this world and that nobody cared, I said “no”, evoking pity from the young woman at the counter as well as the bystanders who had overheard our conversation.

“Nobody?” she asked incredulously.

“No, I can’t think of anyone,” quickly analyzing that if I died, anyone who cared would find out one day and that this would hardly be an urgent matter. …

Two weeks ago, when the Corona crisis really hit, I was on the island of Pico, part of the Azores, in the middle of the Atlantic. There are only two bus routes, each going twice a day, which was not enough. So I had to hitchhike, which I was looking forward to. On small islands, hitchhiking is usually very common and easy.

And indeed, the first car picked me up after waiting for less than a minute. It continued like that. Usually, the second or third car stopped, and the drivers often took me exactly to where I wanted to go, even if it meant a detour for them. …

Many years ago, someone walked into my law office, showed me a notice about some traffic fine and explained, confusing our respective roles in the attorney-client relationship, why he definitely wouldn’t need to pay the fine. According to him, the notice was issued by an authority without authority because the Federal Republic of Germany didn’t really exist, was merely a corporation belonging to the Allied Powers, which are still occupying our country. The Provisional Reich Government would not recognize this and we would need to act against it swiftly and vigorously.

Admittedly, I am a bit older, but this was not in 1946, but around the year 2006. “An eternally malcontent troublemaker,” I thought, happy on the the one hand because such clients provide a regular income. On the other hand, from painful experience (which almost every attorney makes in the first years on the job), I knew that those troublemakers also strain the nerves. Therefore, I quoted an exorbitant fee, which was the first thing that stopped his flow of words. “I can’t pay that much right now, but soon we will assume power again. Then, we will appoint you as Reich Commissioner for Justice!” That was the end of the negotiation for me, because I had never been interested in a government job. …


Andreas Moser

Travelling the world and writing about it. Degrees in law and philosophy, now studying history.

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