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For many, 'nostalgia' is an ugly word, a sign of mental weakness. However, I can't find another one to describe what I don't have, and at the same time it presents itself as a liberation. I have nostalgia for a feeling, because it seems to be free of sentiments that are tangled up in ugly thoughts. I have nostalgia for a narrative tone that ties me to others, because all I know how to write are things that are separate from the life of others. The true, strong feeling that I have might better be described as that of being lost. Not me in particular, as an individual. Instead it is a state of things that I seem to see everywhere.
And the longer I am in a city – Paris, for example -  the more I am convinced that this is not just my fantasy. I am convinced that being lost is the true feeling that I have around me, the liveliest thing that exists. I often go back to reading Sartre, who says : 'Only filthy wretches don't feel lost.'

Gianni Celati

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