Tuesday, 7 May 2019

Heartbreak was the only thing you left for me

D mol

Right up until 1997, the points doled out by countries in the Eurovision were decided by juries- entire sets of po-faced pop professionals desperately trying to convince us that dreary, folky ballad music from Ireland was the best in aural entertainment that the continent could offer for for the whole of the 1990s.

Look into my eyes, fly me high right up to the sky

Anna Odobescu

And so to Moldova, a tiny, landlocked republic wedged between Romania to its west and Ukraine to its north. Imagine if they won it and it was in Chisinau! You'd be rattling along on the train from Romania, wolfing down pork in a restaurant car that looks like your grandma’s front room (a window framed by heavy purple fluted curtains, silk flowers, a faint smell of cigarettes and orange formica tables) when the conductor comes and chats. "The best time in Moldova was at the end of the second world war, after the Romanians had left but before the Russians came" he says - which by my reckoning meant that the country’s glory days lasted for precisely one month.