“I never got married. No, it wasn’t possible. Because of my professional situation, and… of my looks. Here, you have to be tall, handsome, have a good situation, a big salary. So nothing was good enough. I even replied to some ads in the newspapers a long time ago. The first thing they asked: “What’s your situation? Oh no! Everything but that!” Oh no, no, I was really depressed. I stopped that, or I would’ve ended up killing myself.
I dare not say it… I worked 30 years for the Bell butcher shop. I’d work in the Grisons during winter, and in Tessin or Lausanne during summer. And I ended up here at the Molard butcher shop. Once I reached 50 years old: too old, too expansive… kicked out! And I ended up with a “four penny job”, like my father would say. It was a disaster. And then you don’t get anything once you’re retired: 1700 francs, and already more than 1000 is for the rent. And I have a tiny miserable two-room flat. Anyways…
I had a passion for sports. I used to do a lot of sports in the mountains, diving, biking. But 6 years ago, I had a bike accident here, on the road up to Vésenaz. I was riding down the bike lane, and a woman was going up the wrong way with her bike. And for some stupid reason, I veered left to let her pass. At that same moment, a young man was driving up in his car at more than 80 km/h. And he hit me. I don’t remember anything. I spent 1 week in deep coma, and 1 month in artificial coma. And because I didn’t file a complaint, everything is at my expense. My malleolus and collar bone were broken, one kidney and especially my brain were damaged. So, to reboot the brain, I do the crosswords everyday in the 20min newspapers. But I don’t really get better.
I have pains all the time. Ohlala… 24 hours a day. And I live all alone, so I have to find ways to cope. And how’s it going to be in a few years? It’s really painful to get to this point. No more mountains… I don’t do anything anymore. It’s painful to realize that all of this is over. I shouldn’t think about it too much. I’m trying to forget. When I do crosswords, I don’t think about the pains. I’m telling you, you have to keep the head busy, you have to keep the mind busy.”
(Parc de La Grange | translated from French)