I need to redefine my boundaries.
I happen to wake up during the night for fear of choking.
I lay motionless on the bed, terrified of touching my body and not finding anything.
By day I am amazed to see my image reflected in the stores or car windows.
I do not recognize the convoluted image which, curved, passes by me.
A grotesque mask instead of my face.
I'm an old pair of shoes, a coat wet with rain and smelling like a dog.
And I do not feel anything.
Not even pain.
I just feel a stranger.
I have nothing in common with these roads, with this pleasure-loving crowd, with the stench of cheesy kitchens haunting my stomach.
I am alien to the values of this land. Or the lack thereof.
I'm a stranger to this overspending, to credit cards, to fashionable restaurants, to second-generation immigrants who deny their roots, to the limos full of drunken teenagers.
I'm a stranger to how easy it is to marry and divorce in this country.
And how it can make your every wish come true, leaving you with no more dreams.
I'm just a stranger.
Even to myself.
I chose the lake almost by accident. I wanted a place where to refuge, a blanket under which to disappear. I picked up the atlas and I began to search among the place names something which communicated warmth and familiarity. And I found it: MANDELLO DEL LARIO.
It spells of music and ancient perfumes, wooden boats and small sweet water waves.
I decide to get there with an old ferry to Varenna. It serves just a few people during the winter season. Someone, with his cap pulled over his ears and his hands in his pockets, ventures forward to develop winter thoughts.
No separation between lake and sky: a single color, silvery white.
Only a seagull, who dives to catch fish, separates up from down.
It comes from nowhere and returns there.
Noises disappear almost immediately, as well as colors.
I'm a frame in a black and white silent movie.
Lake-oil, air-steel, milky-sky.
Body - cloud - fog - air - molecule - nothing.
But then, all of a sudden, the senses are awakened abruptly. It’s the pungent and overbearing smell of moist soil. I look around like a blind woman to seek the field or the mountain that is hidden behind the fog. But nothing. Still white, seagulls, nothing, winter thoughts and the idea of land. For a long time.
Then suddenly I am in the middle of a square. A local disappears quickly in a tiny alley. Solitary and silent.
There is a warm yellow a light in the distance from a window as the only symbol of mental strength. And It’s easy for me to believe it is going to be all right.