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Concept of the month January 2014: ROLLER COASTER

The restraints click into place. Rigid black life jackets that feel reassuringly determined but feed an anxious sense of powerlessness. We jolt into motion. In hindsight, it is a small jolt that seems futile. After a short straight section, a sharp rise. Slowly but surely, as we gradually get used to the altitude. We even manage to catch some of the view. The world around us becomes small and insignificant.

Suddenly, with the summit in sight, we accelerate. To everyone's surprise, we turn out to be closer than we thought. We take a deep breath. Next, the drop. The drop is an explosion of speed and sound, making our ears burn and our eyes lose track. Others have told us that after this, we can expect a climb made easy by the acquired momentum. But we slow down long before it starts. Will we have enough pace left? Were petrified with anxiety in this roller coaster.

The name roller coaster is said to originate from a type of slide with rollers over which sleds would slide down (coast). To us, its the term now used by everyone, from close friends to unknown partners in adversity, to describe our situation. High peaks and deep lows, being tossed about, shooting forward and freefalling backwards, I see what they mean. The partners in adversity predict an upward trend, leading up to enjoying the ride in the future, no matter what endless loops and corkscrews we might go through. Fortunately, were in this together. My girl and I are closer than ever, right through the restraints.

When I was a child, I was afraid to ride roller coasters that turned you upside down. Now that I have a child, it is the only way. As long as his mother rides with me.

Vienna, one year ago
Vienna, one year ago
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Pepijn de Boer MA

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