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Enjoy Your life! (The Donkey Ride)
Diary • 26 aprile, 2017
The Donkey Ride

In the mid-eighties, I travelled with my young girlfriend to visit a family friend who was living somewhere in the middle of Turkey. We had visited Istanbul earlier, which back then was a completely different city to how is it now, and I remember the family being so incredibly gastfreundlich-hospitable-when we arrived.
Not realising quite how big the country was, I had the stupid idea that we should continue further on,making a two days journey to some townon the Syrian border. The bus ride was hell. We drove all through the night, crossing mountains so close to the edge I was certain we would drive over, and with my weak bladder the driver took far too few toilet stops.My eyes and brain weren't open enough to take pictures.
Eventually we reached a sad, weird desert town where I wasn't sure what to do next. That changed as soon as my girlfriend began sweating all over and throwing-up uncontrollably; she ended up in hospital, which was the total opposite  of a German hospital, a nightmare that lasted for two days.
A nightmare of my own was just about to begin. With me at her bedside, my girlfriend fell asleep in the afternoon and I decided to go for a walk. I roamed around until I found the edge of town, where it ended and the desert was about to begin. I noticed a man on a donkey who rode up beside me. He seemed to be inviting me for a lift back to where I'd  just come from.
I was riding in front, him tight on the back. Almost immediately we turned back in the direction of the desert. I let it happen-there was no communication possible anyway, since neither of us spoke any English, and with the sun just beginning to fade over the desert I could hardly to see the town. In every direction I saw no-one, only dust.
I did think this was all very odd. Meanwhile the man had started moving closer and closer towards me, rubbing his erect penis where my arse was. I was wearing shorts and a t-shirt, and he started touching me from behind, at which point it became clear that I was in real trouble.
My position was awkward: I was seated on the front of the donkey, and he had the advantage of coming at me from behind. He tried to kiss me, finger me, everything. Without getting into to many details, a real fight broke loose during which it took all my strenght to prevent the inevitable from happening.
I whacked the guy in his face numerous times with my elbow, hard, all the time still bancing on top of the donkey. it was the most physical fight or encounter I ever had to this day with a man. But there was another problem. The sky had become dark and it would have taken me two hours to walk back to town in the pitch black. For some reason during the whole time I fought him off, I refused to give up the donkey.
Eventually he gave up trying to rape me; his penis shrank to a normal size after he felt the blood on his face, and he ordered the donkey to turn around. All my senses were alert and it was a weird journey back. It took so long I thought we'd never get there.
The man pushed me off at the edge of town. i left him and walked the rest of the way. When I returned to the hospital I didn't say a word. I was stumm...The rest of the trip was glum and when we got home to Germany my girlfriend and I split up.
Juergen Teller©2016

 Enjoy Your Life! - Juergen Teller exhibition 20 April-3 July 2017 in Berlin at Martin-Gropius-Bau
Juergen Teller, fotografia, mostra, Martin-Gropius-Bau, moda, natura, stile, enjoy your life, art, artlovers, berlin, 2017
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