Skip to main content

Featured

cold nostalgia

There is a note, stuck to the front entrance of our building. The hot water will be turned off for ten days. This is something that happens every summer, although it snowed a week ago and children wander the playgrounds in ski hats these days. At night it can be 40 degrees fahrenheit.  The hot water is always turned off like this, at some point during June or July. It is a long-standing Soviet tradition, and people begrudgingly accept it here. But the baby, V does not. She wants to stand in a hot bath before she goes to sleep, to splash and pour water all around her, and N. She wants to stand and wiggle her tiny hands under the spout, as she grows pink and clean, as she howls and shouts for us to see what new trick she has improvised. There is no explanation for her, why the hot water is off today, and will be tomorrow. She is angry, furious even.

I used to buy the story that this offered a chance for the water department to fix pipes, to take care of routine maintenance. Hot water c…

la prima pagina (the first page)

Twelve years since I sat in a loose chair on a piazza, staring off at the rooftops. I was finishing my novel. It seemed easy, after lunches of bresaolo and long walks.

Our bellies are full. N turns to me sometimes, a quiet smile plastered across her face. She has never been here before. 

Squash blossoms, artichokes and a sun that spreads sideways into rooms are the language of Rome. I wander the ghetto, taking pictures of old men as they become silhouettes. We take a walk long after midnight, me still drunk on Arneis and wild boar. The city breathes us in, holds us for a moment then lets us go. 


In Florence, there is a cold wind and a deep blue sky. I call E, making jokes, wishing her sweet dreams. She asks me what presents I have bought for her. I miss her terribly.

Before I left, I gave her my last red notebook. I wrote a message to her on the first page, telling her to fill it with stories I could read when I got back in a few days. Her chin slumped, tears splashing on the empty paper.
"I'll be ok, Pop." She said, nodding once.

I am starting my new book in Italy.
I told her I had to come to write it, just the first page.
"I understand." She whispered, squeezing my hand.



Comments

liv said…
Oh, how exciting! Write, write, write...and then eat some more...and them love that beautiful N and the write some more!

I can imagine how E is missing you. So I hope the presents are good! xo
Mely said…
Enjoy every moment of it.

This entry was like a postcard from Rome.

Nice,

Mely
Oh YES, M. Memories of that first page. Heaven before the hell that follows. But what a marvelous place to begin.... (Rome, I mean.)

Popular Posts

best personal blogs
best personal blogs