Make your heart a sandcastle

The sandcastle, unlike the castle in the air, has a sincere vocation of mortality.

Oliver Thansan
Oliver Thansan
24 August 2023 Thursday 11:02
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Make your heart a sandcastle

The sandcastle, unlike the castle in the air, has a sincere vocation of mortality. Building in the clouds is fantasy at best. At worst, fall into delirium. When you build a castle of the first ones, look for one that is beautiful, firm, large, made of soft sand, with battlements, walls and wells for water. But anyone who works as an architect – child, teenager or adult – knows that the life of the castle will be short, that the waves will eat it up. But it doesn't matter: it deserves to be born, it deserves to be lived. There's something about falling in love with a sandcastle in the summer.

According to classical mythology, there was a time when the men who preceded us, suddenly punished by the gods, ceased to be immortal and would know exactly how and when their lives would be taken. The thing about being mortal, the way the gods' sadism and their eternal punishments consumed them, didn't seem like such a bad idea to them as the information about what the date of their death would be. This is what plunged them into a paralyzing depression, locked them in caves and holes, not wanting to work or relate to each other. Prometheus, always active in doing justice to men against the slights of the gods, succeeded in partially alleviating that pain. Nothing to do with the subject of immortality, but at least it was granted that men did not know how long they would live, the date of their farewell, how and where. This ignorance caused them to come out of the caves and holes and go back to work, eat, love and fight living their mortality as if it were not. We all know we're going to die, but in reality it's like we can't quite believe it. That's why we waste time, waste it, shorten it, give it to those who don't deserve it.

The sport of falling in love in the summer is a mixture of everything that has been said so far, believing yourself to be immortal, knowing the date and manner of death and pretending that it doesn't matter. Make the castle impregnable, even though you know it has three or four waves left. But it doesn't matter at all. In its most classic and almost obsolete form, falling in love in the summer had an expiration date. September was already something else.

Therefore, we are facing perhaps the sport with a more powerful mythology, more intensely played and with a tradition both popular and cultural (books, films, painting...) that seemed muscular and always alive. It was until what we now call with heavy resignation new technologies arrived. In a certain way and, swaying us in the title of that song: The mobile phone killed the Star of Summer Love. In fact, if we are realistic, building castles in the sand has more of a future than falling in love in the summer and making bits of beautiful and painful melancholy in the fall, which was the object of the aforementioned love sport.

In reality, the prerequisites for this sport are still in effect. It is required that the participants – generally two, although contributions from third parties – do not know each other beforehand or, if they did, they would not have challenged each other to play. We are always in the field of emotions with and without sex, but not orgies, Tinder dates, nights of forgetfulness and illusion, because love and not only sexual attachment is essential to practice this sport. A risky activity, sometimes deadly. The grief at the end of the meeting, sadness, grief and nostalgia, could lead to severe melancholic states, inability to love others and even death.

Let's continue with the ingredients of this game. it's summer In other words, a time outside of time in which one also allows himself to experience feelings outside of what would become the routine. A time of the year when furies such as freedom, optimism, nature, crazy body, another relationship with this and with leisure, an idyllic and adventurous atmosphere are released. Summer, under these circumstances, is your favorite bar where your favorite band plays playing your favorite song in an endless night. The imminence of the tropical storm is in the atmosphere. Something will happen and this thing happens.

A summer love is your life in miniature. This is one of the most paradoxical aspects of this game: it stops time when the passing of minutes, hours, days until you count 30 is most present and inexorable. The game between the opponents becomes hectic. No one knows if he will play and with whom. But intuition rebels against this information at the very moment they happen. The game is passionate, not giving a ball for a miss, and the athletes give everything they have and what they didn't know they had in an environment that takes them with a tray in an extravagant complicity: all the songs that play in their path, all the places, all the sunsets, all the beaches and all the friends you have to run away from to be alone.

The game had its risks, as it was known to end cruelly and resoundingly, especially if you were a teenager, in which other pieces of the game – called parents – became both accomplices, facilitators and inexorable, rule-obedient executioners - those of the adult world - who neither understood nor wanted to understand each other. You went to the emotional limit knowing and forgetting, cheating and promising that the end of the meeting was not the end of the tournament. In its vintage formula, everything was then at the mercy of handwritten letters and calls from landlines in family dining rooms. That world no longer exists and that is why the game has had to change and maybe it is already another game.

Social networks, the internet, video calls, audio notes, WhatsApp and other artifacts, mean that those who abruptly end the game of falling in love in the summer are either married or live in Albania. Summer love ceases to be a nihilistic, exciting and unique game to become, at best, the prime time of any game any month of the year. For romantics, an unprecedented tragedy. For the scriptwriters of German series and films everywhere, a loss that they only half fix by taking their stories to Christmas, the only oasis left to this sport.