Kati. A name I was given 22 years ago.
With Kati I was someone else. I was transforming into a youth woman, alive, lovable,
wanted, special. But at the same time to a woman full of guilt, taboos, stereotypes,
With that name I was with one foot here and the other there.
I had to choose which river bank to stay on.
Kati was constantly bringing me to dilemmas. That made it painful but at the same time
Kati was accompanied with shyness and shame. All this was not allowed due to differences
in religion, age, culture, class and economic differences.
As Kati, everything I was living in could only be hidden. As much as I was trying to think of
a context in which we could coexist, I could not find it.
Neither Kati nor Katerina, I had the strength to impose it on those around me.
Kati was a passport. The passport to a journey into a completely unknown and magical
world, a passport to the depths of the East, a passport to another religion, another language,
other customs, other traditions, another culture, a world with different tastes, smells and
Kati was the name of the woman I was going to become if I accepted following him and to
enter this unknown world leaving my own completely different one.
The trip that was bringing him to his new country was secret.
He traveled without a passport, in a truck, crammed between huge sacks of flour.
On my own six total trips there, my passport was writing my name but there I was
transforming into the woman Kati.
I was living there and I was feeling like an immigrant.
On those trips I was feeling closer to the woman Kati, but at the same time to the realization
that I had to say goodbye to this woman forever.
Today, 22 years later, what is left of this name is calligraphically written on the back cover of
a notebook and engraved on the trunk of an ancient cedar.