LIBRA (any year: 23/09 – 22/10)

Do you want to take a closer look at Libra? (careful - maintain balance...)
Do you want to take a closer look at Libra? (careful - maintain balance...)

What does a Libra do when he gets older? He weighs things. It makes sense, doesn’t it? A cigarette in one hand, some worry beads in the other, and the weighing begins. There are decisions to be made. Tomato pot roast with rice or lemon beef with pasta? Spaghetti with cheese or without? Should he go out into the garden or stay inside? Get into the bath or not? All these questions and so many more to come, but they torment him endlessly. It took him months to make a decision. To go into the nursing home, or stay in his own house? He went to a good nursing home in the end, and so turned a page in his life, and all his questions were turned on their head.

The place where he went, the place he has come to, is it all right, or would it have been better to stay home? Of course it’s fine. It's better, actually. He feels it, he takes pleasure in it, he enjoys it, but those scales in his head never stop trying to balance.

Is this room OK, or would it be better to stay in another one? Should he draw the curtains or not? Should he wear the plaid socks or the solid-coloured ones? The brown or the black shoes? It’s a good thing the right and left shoe is predetermined, otherwise he would waste time on that, too. There is no end to his questioning, which began while he was still in his mother’s tummy. “Should I come out at eight months or at nine months?” “Should I come out head-first or feet-first?” The woman was forced to have a Caesarean, and that was the end of it, and out came a baby - but what a baby!

And what a babe he still is! He’s a doll, no doubt about it. Elegant. Charming. With good taste. All together harmoniously put together. Even the wrinkles are more than wrinkles; they tell a story. As if nature also sat for hours to weigh the characteristics she would eventually bestow upon him, and finally chose the best ones. Handsome to behold, refined in his taste, and eloquent in his words. You could say he is a flatterer. So persuasive are his words.

Once he arrived at the nursing home, the owner directly gave him an assignment to ensure his own peace of mind. “Starting today, you shall take on this role here, because I just can’t do it any more,” he told him. “Starting today, you are the designated diplomat.” Libra smiled, said “thank you for the honour”, as he is polite to a tee, but before exiting the office, he turned to state the obvious. “I am a diplomat anyway. You did not make me one.” He tossed his scarf over his shoulder and left with perfectly synchronised steps. We are talking about style. About taste. About how he walks by with an amazing air. It is exactly that air that shifts the scales, not allowing them to find balance anywhere. At least as far as his own affairs are concerned. He can find balance in others just fine.

He goes out in the garden with his favourite silver whistle to referee those who are playing football. He goes down to the sitting room with the huge wooden hourglass to referee those playing chess. In the backgammon tournament, he takes it upon himself to calm the players down when they start slamming the pieces down. A pacifier. A peacemaker. Give him an argument, and he’ll end it. Give him a fight and he’ll restore peace instantly. Give him an excuse to set forth his arguments. The other day, didn’t he rush out into the corridor in a white towel? He was trying to establish a truce between the ladies arguing over where to place the flower pot, but it was also because he hadn’t yet decided on which boxer shorts to wear. He reached a decision eventually, he got dressed and came out again, looking sharp. He had a date. He has one today, too. With the lady who wears the silk scarf and well-fitting suit. She has made a great impression on him and it seems to be a good match for him. Besides, she knows how to balance on high heels, she should have no trouble balancing at his side.

He wavers. Should they watch a Greek or a foreign film? Gone with the Wind or Casablanca? He wants to go to the cinema without a doubt. Down in the large sitting room. When everyone is sleeping, weighing up the day that passed and their life as it passes so quickly, when the head nurse is staying awake to weigh up syrup and tidy up the medicines on the shelves and the health booklets in the drawer, when the moon is weighing how much time remains until dawn, he will wrap his arm around her shoulder so they can travel together.

And it is true that until the very end of the film, he will wonder if Bogart or Gable is the better choice, but he will not wonder for a second about her. He is very sure about her, because her scent is so divine. Because she inspires him and tomorrow he will draw for hours on the laptop. Because she wears fashionable belts and tasteful shirts. Because she already knows him oh-so-well, and will have brought along the tiny embroidered footstool on which he likes to stretch his legs, rest and finally find his balance.


By Konstantina Tassopoulou

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