Monday, May 09, 2011
We found our friend Gianluca who was exuberantly surprised to see us. We had a caffe' together, caught up on news and happenings, laughed like always. When we parted he teared up a bit, sorry to see us go away so soon.
We walked the familiar streets, smiling at the kids playing in the piazzas, meandered past our former apartments, looked around to see what had changed. We were happy to see that some new shops had opened, and were shocked to see that the stalwart and elegant Caffe' Meletti had closed. We had gelato from our favorite gelateria and drank from the fountain. Just like always.
Ascoli Piceno is as beautiful as ever. We remembered why we loved it; the atmosphere and architecture, the spots we frequented...it all reconfirmed that Ascoli is a very special place. We remembered special moments, special friends as we strolled around.
While teaching English I've had to explain to my students the meaning of the word "home". In Italian "casa" means both "house" and "home," and they're always confused by the difference. I tell them that home is more than a dwelling. It has an emotional context; it's the place where you are secure, happy, embraced.
Yesterday I went back to Ascoli Piceno, a city I love. And then I came home.