Alexander Fufaev
My name is Alexander FufaeV and here I write about:

July 10, 2023: My last presentation at university and the red-haired Mara

10 July 2023. This time I slept a bit better without a pillow – fortunately, because today I had to give my very last presentation. I was sitting in front of the HanoMacke with my laptop and a coffee in hand, practicing a bit more on the critical points of my English presentation, which I was to give in an hour. Then I headed to the Institute of Theoretical Physics. I was very excited. When I entered the room, there were two professors and four students. The excitement subsided when I was allowed to begin. Aside from my dry mouth and the conspicuous stick in my hand, the almost two-hour presentation went better than expected. After a few questions at the end that I couldn't answer, I received a grade of 1.3 from Prof. Jeckelmann.

When I left the ITP building, I felt so relieved. Somehow, I had the feeling again that my "Phase Independent Fit Method" would not be forgotten so quickly. It seemed promising for investigating unknown phase transitions.

Now I really had nothing more to do for the university, not even a presentation to give. Relieved and free, I went to the cafeteria to eat. There, I saw the red-haired student again who had caught my eye lately. She was certainly one meter eighty tall and had a wide pelvis, which I particularly liked about her, as well as her protruding ears. This made her so unique and memorable.

As I saw her, she was leaving the cafeteria with a tray and her friends. After my vegan burger with fries, I decided to look for her and try my luck. It was easy to find her. She was sitting at a table with her friends. I simply walked over to her table, leaned forward with both arms, and spoke to her.

"Hey, I've noticed you several times in the cafeteria. You seem interesting. I like your ears."

"Uh, thanks?!", she reacted confused, and her friends laughed.

"I wanted to ask if you would like to come with me to the HanoMacke?", I coughed ironically, "I mean, would you like to accompany me to the HanoMacke?"

"Thanks for the suggestion, but no, I'm not interested."

"Okay. Bye!", I said decisively and turned to go to the library and think about more 1% changes. I implemented one of them directly in the library: I reduced my smartphone's password to four characters. It always annoyed me to have to enter the long password when facial recognition didn’t work or the phone restarted due to an update. I also turned off facial recognition for unlocking the phone and just used the four-digit password. These 1% changes saved me from the irritated groans every time I had to enter the long password.

While waiting for the bus home after the library, I received a message from Lina. Chiara wanted to move back in with her boyfriend and was therefore leaving our shared apartment. Lina had already posted a WG ad and gave me the login details to her account so I could choose my three favorites and send them to her.

At home, I sat down at the laptop and read through the applications. I ignored most of the ads because they sounded like they were just copy-pasted. I sent my three favorites directly to our WhatsApp group. Shortly after, Vanessa and Lina also posted their favorites. One person I had chosen was also chosen by Lina and Vanessa. It was Antonia. She wanted to start something creative in Hanover and was beginning a fashion design degree. Plus, she was an ABBA fan. That last point was enough for me to make her my favorite.

I closed the browser window and lay on the bed, staring at the ceiling. I had been feeling so good lately. So good that it was exhausting in the long run. For a change, I wanted to suffer again, be melancholic again, intensely think about the past again.

"So, now I want to cry again," I whispered, put on the song "Sisters of the Light" on repeat, and started thinking about Mara...

I imagined her waiting for me again at the stairs at Bielefeld station. When she saw me, she began to beam. With an increased pace, I ran towards her. The closer I got to her, the more I felt a tingling in my stomach. We hugged and didn't let go. We floated into the sky towards the sun and flew through the clouds. Then I imagined Mara now reaching for her phone, calling me, and telling me that she missed me just as much at this moment as I missed her.

Microchange: I have turned off facial recognition on my smartphone and use a four-digit PIN instead. I generally do not use facial recognition.