Arrivederci Abruzzo…for now...a presto
I’m writing this from the apartment which for my compagni di viaggio and I shared the last days free of charge. It is a little after midnight. It feels very, very strange to be going, but I have this strange sensation that I will be back. I guess it’s not that strange, knowing me, considering that I pretty much feel like I’m a part of this place.
The families who for the last days made all their best to accommodate us and never making us feel hungry threw a dinner for us last night which was lovely… Stefano and Valentina made the first course, which consisted of gnocchi with a lovely sauce with walnuts and cream)… Camille and Louisa made tiramisu from scratch, and oh my goodness was gorgeous and the sausages stew and salads. There was lots of wine to go around. It was bittersweet, this last evening together. I hated all of this in a way because I do not want to leave them, but it felt so wonderful to be so loved and taken care of once again. These people have been a big part of my life here in L’Aquila, they really have…
While getting my rucksaks all finished up, I would take a pause every now and then to look at the view of the trees and part of il centro out my window, and it made me feel very heavy with many feelings - pride, sadness, satisfaction as well as dissatisfaction, hope, curiosity, accomplishment, fear, grief, excitement…
Saying goodbye to Louisa was the hardest of all. She did not take my leaving well at all. She has a hard time saying goodbye in general which I already knew, but this was particularly hard. But we both have a feeling that we will see each other again soon, like this year.
Even though I’ve only known Christina a couple of days now, it had felt like years, and we had an emotional goodbye as well. It’s amazing to think that the few days I’ve spent in Italy all of us have touched each other’s lives so deeply in this amount of time. It’s what happens when the common language is one other than your own - particularly a language, such as Italian. You have no other choice but to be straight-forward and honest about yourself and what you want. I have made such close friends so quickly this way and my heart just aches to be away from them right now.
Stefano offered to help me with my bags getting off the car when we got to the main square. It was hard to say “arrivederci” to him…Naturally, since we are in Italy, everybody else offered as well and I had no problems at all. In other places…. well, this wouldn’t have happened. People would have stared numbly while I sweated and struggled. I love you, Italy. Thank you for being the birthplace of such helpful people. May the goodness spread.
Stefano told me today that I have an Italian spirit.
“Hai uno spirito Italiano,
I think I’m part abruzzese, and part maltese if you want to be specific.
And if you throw all of the people that I have known in L’Aquila into the mix… Italian, American, Australians, Russians, German, Spanish, Slovakian, Polish… oh my God I sound like an Erasmus commercial.
I’m going to bed. Buona notte, Abbruzzo…a presto