Please let me tell you the continuing saga of the Absinthe-Trinker, who always seems by his own misfortune and lunacy to find the greatest of human kindness. Through our errors and being lost sometimes we can find this special spark known about the Swiss people. Take me, Absinthe-Trinker, arrived in Solothurn for a much-needed vacation, after 18 months of continuing work, and arrived especially for Nachtschatten Verlag’s 25th anniversary extravaganza in Interlaken – an event, I am still shaken and stirred to this day.
So Americans, this American, we routinely work too hard, and within 17 months of working without a real vacation or escape, I was very ready and ventured back to Switzerland to party, and wander the Alpes. The first night will be in Solothurn.
Not intending to stay in Solothurn my first night, but my hosts in Zurich had an ill child, so I could not take my normal first night in the quite farmhouse. The quite postcard setting of Hausen ZG was replaced by Solothurn’s Friday night. It seemed like a full moon, all kinds of people were out in force.
What is the depth of human kindness, and what is the depth of lunacy and too much drink and irresponsibility. There is the absinthe-trinker, freshly arrived from America. He is tired and burned-out like a dead star from absorbing too much America: too much greed, too much pollution, too much lying, misrepresenting foul people.
Then there is Marie-Therese Dorfler, proud and regal owner of the Die Krone Hotel. Die Krone is the weight of the ville. The weight starts with the St. Ursen Kathedrale, then spills off the weight of Die Hotel Krone, and through the little shop keepers, Bohemian apartments to drown in the River Aare.
Take the absinthe-trinker, who was not even supposed to be in Solothurn that first night, August 29 Friday. Since Zurich was cancelled, it was off to Solothurn, the next destination. Better to be in the free village of Solothurn than the cold, granite stone of Zurich, and its myriad of traps and police roadblock controls.
This to sweep up lost tourists and the mischievous lot of Zurichiose night life.
I told myself, ‘try and go through the first night without any Absinthe’ since the mind and body are attached to door hooks in different rooms.’
At Die Grune Fee, I met again my publisher, Roger Liggenstorfer, who was not expecting me that night, yet graciously accepted my geshank for his 25th anniversary of publishing. We hung out for a few drinks and merrymaking, and it was a grand first night. I had two absinthes, whoops?