Trafika Europe 5 - Slovenian Interlude

bedside table. A rubber on the table reminded me that Nedelko Borojević used to solve math problems in the Voice of Istria newspaper, using a pencil and rubber. Sometimes it took him all afternoon, and so focused would be on his task that he wouldn’t hear Dusha yelling from the kitchen if he wanted to eat what was left of lunch. ‘I don’t think I’ve been in here since he left. I saw people come several times and take things away, but what could I do? Now I don’t even remember what used to be in here, but it was always so... empty. He had a few books and I gave him a potted plant once. I know he had a painting. I think it used to hang above the armchair. He said he’d bought it at a stand beside the farmer’s market, that he’d liked the young painter and thought he was a good haggler. So he said.’ While Mediha kindly put forth an effort to reminisce aloud about her former neighbour, I mindlessly flipped through the old Sudoku puzzles. They were solved, all of them, filled in with accurate, even beautiful numbers, which revealed an unusually meticulous man, in striking contrast to the state of his apartment. He seemed to have had more time for Sudoku puzzles than anything else in his life. If I could judge by the astonishing number of solved puzzles, I’d say that Tomislav Zdravković hadn’t been up to much of anything else during his time in Brčko.


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