“Mangia bene, ridi spesso, ama molto”. – “Eat well, laugh often, love much”. – Italian saying
Once upon a time….
…there was a girl, namely Serena. Dearly beloved and loving child, she was beautiful, gentle, well-born and well-bread. She was smart and extremely enthusiastic about all the adventures life would give her. At the same time, Serena was sweetly innocent, since by the age of 24 she had barely experienced sorrow or disappointment. Not to mention betrayal or any kind of moral or social evil. This girl was healthily naive and absolutely happy. A type of modern Snow White or Cinderella, but without any familiar to them life issues. Until that moment.
This is how her love story begins…
The moment when Serena earned her first Master’s degree (with Hons), she felt so excited and was deeply convinced that all imaginable difficulties were already over. All hard work was done, and it was the perfect moment to relax and get entertained. Besides, it was summer time! So our girl and her three dearest friends decided to go on three-week vacations in Italy.
Initially, Serena insisted on going to Greece, since she was fond of Greek history and its beautiful outlying islands, one different from another. Her friends objected that after five consecutive summer holidays spent on the land of Ellines, this was the time they must finally see that of Romans, i.e. Italy. Moreover, Italy is world-known for plenty of its exciting allures. From its fashionable resorts to late-night shopping, from prestigious museums and ancient ruins, from glamour discotheques to gourmet cuisine and sophisticated wine.
The destination chosen was Milano Marittima, an exclusive and renowned resort on the Adriatic Riviera. The location is well-known as the ideal “place to be” for a complete holiday offering high quality, fun and professionalism. Besides, at Milano Marittima it is easy to spot some Italian VIPs, while taking a sun bath or sipping Franciacorta in one of the beach bars. Situated in the core of town right on the sea shore, Aurelia, was a fancy four-star hotel and its restaurant was upscale. The weather was excellent so already two days later, Serena was pretty sun burned. More beautiful than she ever was. On the other hand, if you are 24 years old and the nature generously gave you everything one can dream of, what else to expect?
Love at first sight …maybe…
Serena was happily single and was all for non-binding flirting and making friends. A year ago, after six years of annoying relationship, she had split up with her ex-boyfriend. Her first and only boyfriend in a life-time period. Most noteworthy, she was expecting to encounter the love of her life now. Not at the two o’clock in the morning being half-drunk, dancing and laughing at Pineta club. Not at first sight.
Her Italian fancy bit…
…happened to be in the right place at the right time. And happened to be fourteen years older. An engineer of water-heating devices. Brilliant, self-confident, immediate, extremely handsome. His eyes were dark and luminous, while his eyelashes were somewhat completely straight as if he’d ironed them before going out. This rendered his look difficult to withstand. His hair were black and glossy, his lips were full and pouty. Every feature of his face was virile. His nose was strong, a bit aquiline, but absolutely perfect. Serena had never seen a man as handsome as him: nor in the glossy magazine advertisers, neither in the movies or TV.
To further complicate matters, he emanated diabolic brainy power as other men emanate Eau De Parfum. When their eyes met for the first time, she felt literally paralyzed. Just like the monkey feels when the python hypnotizes her before swallowing. His name emanated some kind of dark and sensual power as well: Mauro (Literally “dark skinned”; a Moor). There was something prohibited and authentically addictive about all his appearance.Serena hardly noticed that the man wasn’t very tall: he was tall enough to be even with her on her high hills. On the other hand, history shows us, that more man is brilliant, less he is tall. Let’s think of Napoleon Bonaparte (his height was 5ft 6.5in or 169 cm) or Silvio Berlusconi (tall 165 cm), to name just a few. Moreover, Mauro was Earth-to-Earth. He knew everything she didn’t. At the Universities, you know, they explain to you a general theory, while the practice is often omitted. Hence real life courses often take you by surprise. Let alone in Italy!
When theory and life collide
So, the theory of “Laws of Attraction” states: “never have sex with a man on the first date”. In practice, she couldn’t avoid. She was dying of wanting him. On the other hand, even if their “relationship” wouldn’t work, Serena was convinced not to risk much: after two more weeks she would leave anyway. Also their first date wasn’t really a date but rather an acquaintance, a face-to-face fascinating and alluring conversation followed by a pure magic. He was passionate, and sweet, and steamy.The day after Serena could hardly remember the details, but she was dreaming of him. Waiting for him to call, to text, to fall in his powerful arms. To ascend to heaven as he would touch her…
But he didn’t phone. Nor texted. Neither had he showed up.
Two days later, convinced that for her Italian fancy bit it was just a one-night stand, Serena decided that she must take him out of her mind. Eventually, she would think about Mauro later. It seemed the “Laws of Attraction” theory wasn’t that exaggerated after all. Or maybe love in Italy is just a figment of imagination?
As a result, Serena decided to concentrate all her attention on her best friends and their new friends. As well as to have sun and sea bathing in the mornings. Make lots of shopping in the afternoons. Have lots of fun and total relax all the time and drink lots of beloved Franciacorta or Cosmopolitan cocktails in the evenings. Dance and socialize at Pineta until dawn. And, of course, learn some Italian. She was ok, or at least, she tried as hard as she could. Until one day when Mauro came to the Aurelia’s foyer to see her.
Needless to say, that Serena didn’t expect to meet him again. She was bitterly angry with him. He was ecstatically happy she was.Mauro explained that the reason he didn’t call the day after was that for the first time in his life he felt as if he was falling in love, and so he went scared. He thought their relationship was impossible, and mostly it had no sense at all. She was so young and innocent, he was so lost. He would ruin her buoyancy. Thus he had decided to stay away from her and to take her out of his mind immediately, because there was no logical future. But then he realized he couldn’t. He realized he loves her. From the first sight and for a life-time.
So, maybe love in Italy is not just a figment of imagination?
This post is also available in: English