Cosimo Pacciani
La City dei Tartari
23 Luglio Lug 2013 1350 23 luglio 2013

11 Short Stories for 11 Summer (Personal) Hits

1. Through the (summer) night He was used to sit on a bench on the top of the little sea town's harbour. Night life among fish was looking much more exciting than the one of the village of retired fishermen and solitary artists. During the summer, some jazz musicians were playing some old Coltrane variations for the pleasure of lukewarm crowds of German and Dutch tourists. Not many Italians were staying there, as the place was not a fashionable one, notwithstanding its castle, the old lighthouse and crystal clear waters. Damiano was kind of forced to leave Florence with his family and spend five weeks of a regularly scorching August between the seldom shadow of pine trees and cold water streams, running like promises of another winter, between the Tuscan coast and Corsica. The bench was his little kingdom, where a small bunch of friends were gathering, their backs burned by the uncompromising sun and their little adventures to tell each other, as night was falling down. Dusk into darkness was the perfect moment to let go and spread tales and descriptions of different worlds, cities. Damiano was listening fascinated to his friends from Milan, Rome, Berlin and the odd Madrid guy, as if they were from other planets. He was giving a good rendition of that fascinating place that Florence was around 1986. Him coming of age, the country getting laid with its most awful misteries and that youth of newwavers and gentle fashionistas, all shaping a future of uncertainty. That summer was going to remain a milestone, one of those elaborate and descriptive he was used to admire in a little museum down the little village centre. Romans knew how to define territories, time, they had the secret of the land. He was sitting on the bench, nobody around apart the same fish as above partying on a carcass of bread. As he was coupling on his head that vision of transient excitement and Martiale's epigrams, a voice over his head shook the air. 'Is this the only show in this bloody village?' He turned his head and he recognised the person, she was the granddaughter of their neighbours. Her father migrated to Norway, to work for a salted fish factory, given his expertise, and he made a fortune there, like the Venetians in the fifteenth century. The mother was from around there and Damiano could recognise her only for the opalescently blue colour of her eyes. Everything else around there was just morphed. From crysalys to butterfly, he thought, touching his teenager's forefront spot. 'It's the only show here, but, hey, these guys are consistent. Every night of quiet waters, they reply it. When the storm hits the harbour, he continued, I just sit here waiting for a big wave to drag me into the abyss' 'You don't look like Pinocchio, my friend' 'she laughed. 'I was thinking more about Poe, or Dino Buzzati' She sat next to him and she told him 'Ok, I will stay ten nights before going back to Norway. I will wait for you here, after the sunset and, obviously, dinner with our families. We will have to tell each other a short story, one every night. Till the fish will stop that mess and listen to us' Damiano looked at Maria, this was her name, he smiled and he said 'fine. but, what if others will be here?' 'we will be storytellers. Good narrative carries the night of the soul away. We will live the lives of others'. They both smiled. Like if a new slant of summer in a remote tuscan village was opening up for both of them. Damiano heard his name shouted by his father, with the extreme tecnique of a turkish muezzin, from the tower house where they were staying. They parted. Till the night coming. Soundtrack Noah and the Whale - All through the night

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