Life is a journey and we travel a lot during our lives, throughout space and time.
This is a story of a life journey, from the time I was a little child up to one year ago. As far as my memories goes, I remember a little girl hiding under the kitchen table thinking that would make her invisible and my father coming home and pretending not to see me and calling my name, just to act surprise when I finally jumped out. I remember some nights when it was time to go to bed and my dad carrying my sister on one shoulder and me on the other, just to throw us onto our beds making us laugh so hard.
My dad back in the days!
“Dad, are you going to take me to the “cimena” today?”
“You will only be able to go once you learn how to say it right” he used to tease me and I could no figure out what was wrong with what I said. I remember the school days, when I didn’t want to get out of bed and he use to come to my room, tickle my feet while singing “forza e coraggio che domani arriva maggio”. I remember when times he came to pick us up at the end of the school day (the advantage of growing up in a small town was to be able to let you kids go everywhere without any problems) whethear because it was raining or just because he felt like doing it. The years go by fast and there was my father with two teenage daughters and almost adult son, incapable of communicating with us and becoming distant, unreachable. He came from a different time, marrying my mother when he was already forty years old (which made him a middle age man at that time) and he come from a totally different way of thinking and acting and had no idea how to deal with us. I’m not even sure if he ever tried, probably confiding in the fact that my mother would have done whatever necessary to raise us in a proper way. Those were probably the most difficult years for both of us but we made it and it was time for me to leave the nest and find a way in this world by myself. I was barely nineteen years old but once I was out of the house, things started to change and my father become a little more talkative with us. I think it’s because he started to look at us as responsible adults and most of all, he realized he could not silence us anymore when we could not agree on some issues.
My dad not too long ago
I remember when I decided to move to the States; my mother thought I was crazy and tries to dissuade me in every possible way, while my father on the other hand was the one pushing me to follow my dream. I always thought I took my Gypsy soul after him, since he was the one who always had a suitcase ready, just in case.
I remember the first time they came to visit me in Seattle and the excitement I felt to have them with me for an entire month. I wanted to show him my house, my friends, my life. I wanted to make him proud, knowing that whatever I was doing and whatever I had conquer up until then, it was just because of me!! All I had it was because I worked hard and I only had to thank myself and my parents for making me what I am.
Soon after I move to New York and I remember my dad telling warning me to be careful at first and then telling me he would not die until he had come to see the Big Apple. I used to joke saying he was going to live a long life, since there was no way in hell he was coming to visit me. But he did and he loved it. The good thing was that finally he could talk about something else, since all his friends (and all the people he came across!!!) had to listen to the stories about his daughter living in America. He was proud of me and he was a little full of himself as well (ouch, everybody keeps telling me I look exactly like him!), so telling his stories was a way to catch the attention and a way to make himself look good. The life journey continued and even the invincible and the immortal get weak and old. So here is my father, fearing death more than anything else in the world, becoming old and driving everybody crazy because of his fears. He reached a point where he could not remember my name but he knew exactly who I was as he referred to me as “the American”. It would have been his birthday today, few days before his journey on this earth ended. I did not wish him happy birthday last year because it was going to a hard time, probably the hardest of his life. His suitcase was ready once again, but this time the voyage was going to take him somewhere where he could not come back from. So happy birthday daddy; I hope they have a cake and candles and presents there. And when you blow the candles and make a wish, I know you will think of us.
I love you.