Lisbon EP #4 Strawberries and wine.

Helen Vechurko
11 min readJun 26

I’m watching waves hitting rocks, scattering in huge splashes, and ending up as white foam. From the top of the cliff, it gives a cinematic feel like one of those travel films on youtube I save to “watch later”. And this time I’m a part of the picture. In my film, I set up a picnic on the rock with a lavish menu of strawberries and rosé. Lisbon Extended Play would be a title. Might change later though. We start with a medium shot of a blond girl, scribbling in the notebook. As she pauses, she takes a sip of wine, covers her short hair with a hood, and looks at the shore. As she is lost in her thoughts, the wind pets pages, randomly turning to the one highlighted as “Rita”.

“She is a wannabe actress in her 30s that struggles to make ends meet. In her ideal world, she is a diva. But what we see is a woman failing to pay her rent. Her flatmate, a writer, who has never published anything longer than a novel review, just saved her from an argument with a landlady, and now they are both at risk of getting kicked out. They sit face to face, talking quietly, almost whispering, trying to hide both are still shaking from the heat of the argument. In the ideal world, we have Rita Hayworth timidly putting her hand over Chekhov’s shoulder. What we see is two people in denial.”

What would you do if there is nothing you can do? And I say to myself there is no reason to worry until you have 2 euros for wine and the ocean is a free attraction.

This would be the opening scene of the Lisbon EP. In film school, they warn you to stay away from complex structures. Film in a film? I doubt they would approve. But I dropped out last year. And recently my life feels like a dream in a dream. Someone, pinch me.

[sound of waves crashing, seagulls cawing, deep breathing, inhale, exhale…]

Last summer I failed the crowdfunding campaign for filming “Rita”. In the beginning, the mere thought of it felt like the end of the world. Then it happened. Then it was another day. At the reading of the scriptwriters club, they were laughing at the scene of a writer’s suicide attempt. Desperate, he puts all his belongings into a box and tries to hang himself. I still don’t get what’s so funny about a man’s life being diminished to a size of a box. I’m not looking for logic here. I know I’m facing the…