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Fragments of Mysterious Life by George Ivanov Vasilev

Writing.ie | Magazine | Mining Memories | Tell Your Own Story
George Vasilev

George Ivanov Vasilev

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It was in May 2004, I can’t remember the exact day or date, I had been walking around Ruse (a Bulgarian town bordering Romania) for most of the day I was expecting to meet my wife and our two children (aged 4 and 5) at the railway station they were due to arrive there on the train from Bucharest. The train arrived and surprisingly somehow we missed each other. Who would have thought this could happen?

I was excited as I looked for them among the crowds of people on the platform, I had not even thought that they could have been held up at customs, as I later found out. The train left and there was no sign of my wife and our children although they had seen me and even waved and shouted to me from the window, I did not see or hear them, reluctantly I left the station very sad and worried that we did not meet each other.

We met the next day at my parent’s house in Bulgaria, I was discussing what had happened with my wife when she uttered “George our missing each other like that, you know, it could have some sort of symbolic reason”. I dismissed her comment, not paying any attention to her supposed prophecy!

About three three weeks later I sent my wife and children to Canada, the intention was that I would follow them there as quickly as I possibly could. Unfortunately, things did not turn out as we had originally planned and I was unable to get to Canada. However, I spoke to my son Ivan on the phone on a regular basis. For months my little boy who was 5 (but now is 20) kept asking “Daddy, when are you coming, will you be here soon?”. For almost fourteen years that innocent boy’s voice has haunted me and I am sure it will for the rest of my life.

Even now many times I have pondered over this “missing each other” at that railway station wondering if my wife’s dreadful prophecy could be coming true. It is amazing sometimes how life reveals our destiny with such mundane and insignificant thoughts.

In 1999 I was and still am considered to be stateless without going into this too much it happened when I married my Romanian wife and by circumstances I could not control, now I am forced to live without my family due to some bureaucratic rules, through all this time I have been yearning to be with my loved ones, I feared that we may be split up for ever if I was going to be away from them for much longer. Then it looked like it had turned out that way when my application for refugee status in Canada was turned down and I was left alone and away from my family in 2004. I have always asked myself how could this happen – why, why, why? I miss and love them so much. My wife and I love each other dearly and neither of us wanted this awful thing to happen to us. Now we live apart and divorce is not an option.

It is FATE I hear people say, but what is fate? Fate, a little four-letter word that is mysterious and unexplained, a word many of us blame for the problems that life throws at us. Still, I think in some way that I am responsible for what has happened, maybe I acted in a way that is not acceptable in this mystery called life. My great fear of losing my family has actually brought me to the point of losing them. In a way, this looks paradoxical but it is not.

All this time, fourteen years already this voice has been playing and replaying in my head that I could not change what has happened so it must be the truth. When I arrived from Canada in February 2004, I spent three months in Romania( my family lived there before moving to Canada) surrounded by our two small kids. I was filled with happiness. Since we were married in Bulgaria in 1999, we had never lived together so I was really at the top of the world. Who would have thought that just a month later we were going to separate?

Maybe I had too much happiness and fate decided it should be taken away from me forever. Through this experience and after all these years I have come to the conclusion that whatever happens in life, immaterial what is, if it is too much, in some way or other is rejected, unacceptable by existence. Of course, we all rush around in this dynamic world not even paying attention to life itself or what could or should be.

Even now after all these years I still recall those precious times talking to my wife and children on the phone sharing our thoughts and dreams. I had a dream that what has happened would come true. I did not pay much attention to this dream. Dreams are dreams, everybody dreams, most of them are nonsense and rarely do they materialize. Now my only dream is to reunite with my family again but dreams only come true now and then. So maybe FATE has destined this to happen surely most people would think that way but what if our thoughts are our fate and dreams which sometimes reflect what our thoughts have unconsciously challenged. Probably most of us in a very subtle way act through our thoughts. And perhaps in some very critical moments activating the very core of our mysterious lives we are being warned what is going to happen, but most of us remain unconscious to such phenomena.

Still after all these years and many attempts to get into Canada and join my family, I still hear the angry repercussions of my daughter’s voice come to me in my dream in 2005: “Daddy what is the matter, why won’t you come to us?”. This is indeed prophetical if one thinks about it for too long. I often do think this over and I am astonished how this life reveals so much through insignificant things. Sometimes I ponder if our thoughts provoke these things to happen! Perhaps!

I still recall that fateful day in June 2004 at Sofia airport in Bulgaria, my little daughter Celia and my son Ivan waving and shouting at me in all their innocence, my wife with tears streaming down her face – did she realize our separation would be for so long? And I have not seen any of them since then for fourteen years.

(c) George Ivanov Vasilev

About the author

My name is George Ivanov Vasilev, born in Bulgaria on October 5th, 1961. I am a former Bulgarian citizen but from 2000 due to my mixed marriage and some discrepancies with Bulgarian legislation in 1999, I renounced my Bulgarian citizenship in public.
Many years ago I used to publish in Bulgaria, in local newspapers mainly short fiction and non-fiction, essays and articles. In 2003 Maclean’s magazine in Canada published a story of mine, as well as Australian MamaMia three years ago.

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