In San Francisco I met some nice people and we rented a car to go to LA. It was Francoise from Canada, two English guys, an Austrian guy (I can’t remember their names) and it was Monika Hauri from Switzerland. Somehow Monika and I found each other, so when the group broke up in LA, Monika and I continued our journey together. I have vague memories that we stayed in Santa Monica for some time but eventually we took a night flight to Mexico City. We drank lots of Tequila in the restaurants at the Plaza Garibaldi. Hundreds of Mariachi bands were playing simultaneously. It was a fantastic cacophony. I remember also that we always had to run to cross the streets to escape all the mad taxi drivers.
Anyway, after some time I explained to her that I was going to Isla Mujeres, alone. I needed to think things over. A week or so later, she found me there, but I didn't want to continue our relationship. I was looking for adventure and adventurers don't travel hand in hand with women. So I told her to fuck off and went to Guatemala.
After a few months I was back in Stockholm, more miserable than ever. I didn’t know what I would do with my life. I didn’t fit anywhere. My friends had little home parties and I was bored to pieces with all the coziness and their boring small talk. “Could you pass me the sauce, please? It’s wonderful, isn’t it?" That kind of stuff.
In late September 1981 I had had enough and bought a one-way ticket to Greece. I had no plans at all for my trip and I figured that Greece could be a good place to start out. The first thing that happened to me was that I caught a terrible flu. I was completely knocked out for a week or so, and after another week of recuperation I realized that Crete was not for me. Crete was for couples. They were sitting there in the taverns, in silence, sipping their cocktails with small paper umbrellas as decoration. I was desperate. Where would I go and why? Wouldn’t it be the same thing wherever I went?
I checked out from my hotel room and went down to the harbor without any idea of where I should go. The next boat was to Santorini so I took it, glad to leave Crete behind. It was a horrible trip. The sea was very rough and people puked all over the place.
We came to Santorini late at night, maybe 11:30 pm, or so. There were many people in the harbor and a lot of restless hustle and bustle. I put my backpack down and smoked a cigarette while I was trying to figure out how to find a place to stay at this late hour, when a young boy came up to me.
"Hotel room mister? Do you want a hotel room?"
When I said yes, he asked me to wait a moment, and then he disappeared in the crowd. When he came back he had a young American with him.
Then we took a bus up to his parents hotel. I fell in love immediately. She was so pretty and seemed so smart. I liked the way she talked. I liked everything with her. At the hotel they made us a dinner. Suddenly I was sitting there in the warm Mediterranean October night, with all its stars and a beautiful young woman with brown eyes across the table, and a bottle of wine to the moussaka. I thought I was dreaming.
We had some wonderful days and nights there and I was madly in love. One day I asked her about what she did before coming to Santorini and she told me that she had stayed in Lucerne in Switzerland for some time and worked in a hotel there as a waitress. Then I told her that I knew someone from Lucerne and that her name was Monika Hauri. I can’t find words to the feelings that came over me when she told me that she knew her. She told me about what had happened to Monika and that she was now happily married to a Canadian guy.
Then the love of my life suddenly left me. Just like that. She ditched me. She had had enough of my neurotic negativity and I was all alone again.
The next day I took a night boat back to Athens and if I had been confused before it was nothing compared to my confusion that night. I spent the whole night on the upper deck looking at the stars and the moon and the dark endless sea. And the sea, the night sky and my consciousness kind of merged into an incredibly strange experience. I was all alone in the universe. I was feeling so alone. And in the same time I was feeling connected. We were all connected in some strange way, through some kind of invisible web.
Well, to make a long story short, I went to India and then I spent a number of years trying to understand what was going on.
One day there in India I bumped into Monika again. She wasn’t very happy to see me but we had a short conversation in a chai shop in Pushkar. I told her that I knew a little about what had happened to her and I remember that I asked her if she didn’t find the whole thing very strange. She couldn’t see anything strange with people bumping into each other. She said: “Of course you meet some people again if you’re traveling along the same routes."
Eventually I came back home, found myself a girlfriend, an apartment and a job, and everything was alright for many years, with pasta dinners, TV nights and everything. This relationship ended also in a catastrophe and I have been living alone since then. And I am quite happy with this. I have finally learned how to live alone.
In July 2005 something interesting happened though. I found a letter among my bills and junk mail when I came back home from work. It said: “Greetings! Do you remember me? If yes send me an e-mail." It was from Doreen. I hadn’t heard a word from her for almost 25 years so I was, what should I say, a bit surprised.
I sent her an e-mail right away, eager to know what had happened to her after she had left me in Santorini. And I had many memory gaps that I needed help with to fill in. I have periodically experienced many strange coincidences, but this what happened to me in Santorini was by far the strangest of them all. Isn’t it weird that I fell in love with someone who knew Monika Hauri, on another continent, almost two years later? What is the probability for such a coincidence? And Doreen dumped me much in the same way as I had dumped Monika. Isn't it weird that I kind of got paid back with the same currency?
Is it a God or an angel that sometimes engages in the course of events and directs our steps, or is it something in our unconscious minds that create the synchronicities? Are synchronicities some kind of lessons? Or is all this with synchronicities just illusions? Billions of events takes place in the world every day. Is it that we only notice the ones that stand out. I had thousands of questions I needed to discuss with her.