Sunday, 20 July 2008

Interlude: What is Europe - and why am I writing about it?

Why am I writing about Europe? Where is the sense in spending time on blogging about this thing called "Europe"?

The reason: I am born European geographically. I was raised European mentally. And I have become European politically.

So what is Europe? It is as simple as this: Europe is a construction. It doesn't really exist. For me, it is the word that expresses two different feelings that are on the two sides of the same mirror:

First, Europe is the multitude of identities floating through me every day. And second, Europe is the feeling of connectedness with people from all over this (sub-)continent: my Russian and my French brothers; my Greek and my German sisters; my Finnish and my Swiss idols; my Welsh and my Norwegian teachers; my Polish and my Estonian friends; my Spanish and my Moldovan competitors; my Bulgarian and my Hungarian flatmates; my Bosnian and my Belgian partners; my Azeri and my Austrian colleagues; my Czech and my Italian ancestors.

Through them and many more I am European. That is why I am blogging about Europe. Not in an exclusive sense as the European Union is designed. But in an inclusive way that says: As much and as many in as possible.

However, the European Union is fascinating because it is a right but in some ways mislead political project. It is an example of how to do it and of how not to do it. The European Union is not Europe, it is just a part of it, in some way or another. So it is also part of this blog, in some way or another.

Yet, this blog is about everything European. And since I cannot capture everything, I take a look at some of the things. That doesn't mean I ignore the rest, it just means I don't write about it. If I had unlimited time available, everything would be in. If there was unlimited time available, everything would be Europe. But sadly and truely, time is limited. And so I just try (almost) every day:

As much and as many in as possible.

Read also: "The European Dream"