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ISSN 1409-6900 | UDK 82+7     Blesok no. 103-104 | volume  | December, 2015



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                     Peer-reviewed journal
Blesok no. 103-104December, 2015
Prose

THE FERRIS WHEEL

/14
p. 1
Clemens J. Setz

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THE FERRIS WHEEL

Translated by: Ross Benjamin
    (English translation copyright © 2015 Ross Benjamin)

      
    Monika had moved into the Ferris wheel in the summer of 2003, after she had dropped out of law school for good. Her parents, wealthy entrepreneurs, had declared themselves willing to keep helping her out financially, and had not even been surprised by the extraordinarily high rent for the apartment in car no. 21 of the gigantic steel construction on the outskirts of the city.
    Built in the late nineties by Austrian star architect Albert Zmal and accompanied by some media hype, the blue wheel, with its cross braces and bicycle-like spokes shimmering through the fog on this September morning, had gradually become the new emblem of the city. At the same time, however, the demand for the apartments had declined steeply. That most likely had to do with the way you left your dwelling, which took some getting used to. Either you had to wait up to forty minutes until the car reached the ground, or you pressed the stop button and took one of the express elevators within the spokes to the central main tower, from which you could get outside by way of the stairs.
    At the moment, Monika’s apartment was at the top, the highest point of the wheel, several hundred yards above the ground. Monika was sitting at the kitchen table and warming her hand, which suffered from chronically bad circulation, on a steaming cup of tea. Darjeeling. She read the label on the little teabag for the third time. A friendly, almost tender word, like darling, only stretched apart in the middle by a foreign syllable.
    Her day had begun dismally. First she had tried to air her rooms, but realized that someone had once again pressed the stop button, probably was even holding it down, which always happened when someone was moving, and that she was still hovering much too close to the noise and grime of the main street. So she had taken a bath and then painted her toenails, but that had not improved her mood.
    She looked out the window. The gray exoskeleton of a vacant factory building on the other end of the city park could be seen clearly. Next to it an ugly white church steeple. Everything else was more or less hidden in the fog.
    The highlight of the day lying ahead of her was the visit






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