This novel was written in different times and ways, in places I didn't even consider suitable for writing. But when what you feel needs to come out, it finds its own way even though it may seem is not the right one. This story tells of two small children tied up from birth as they were born in the same year, month, hour and even the same minute. A strange connection that will eventuate in a tender and pure love, a feeling that will grow with them becoming inissoluble. An impossible love that of children, at once hindered by her parents. So haughty and perfect that they cannot accept the differences. So insensitive and careless about their pure and necessary feeling, forcing them to separate and to forbear, without knowing that true love cannot be thwarted, because it always finds a way to resist and exist. A love story, this one, - noisy - and - resonant - that resounds like an echo in the silence of indifference, breaking the wall of quiet. A true story that deals with real issues that are part of the life of each of us, topics I have not been able to hold back because guided by that special feeling we all look for, like water in desert, the feeling we call - love - . It is love, the impossible knot to untie this story; it is the love I have tried to gather and expose in a few lines by making my heart speak. Such a strong emotion, like the one that prompted me to write this book, could not be enclosed in a casket, not able to contain it all. - February 14, the day before - because I somehow wanted to initiate, but simultaneously I wanted to unbind lovers' time from such an important date, such as that of Valentine's day, which for many represents a real exaltation of love while for many others it is only the display of the most beautiful feeling existing. Going beyond that simple date, I wanted to extend the duration of love to an "indefinite" time, for all those who love and continue to love, in space, in
days, in time, always, for the rest of their life. Nobody can imagine what the future holds for us, precisely for this, when, during the life's journey you meet the right person for you, the one who immediately fills every hidden corner of your heart illuminating it with light, you cannot, you must not, let it go. There are no emotional or economic feelings that can divide two people truly in love. You can't split them ... you'd kill them both. Please forgive my inexperienced hand in writing every intimate thought, I have done everything to make it as real and truthful as possible; I worked hard to put on paper every sensation that came from deep, everything that my mind created and told in this story. Leaving aside, sometimes, errors in a voluntarily "involuntary" way, I can assure you everything I have written is inspired by the heart.
A DIFFICULT CHILDHOOD Sicily. The sun was beating hard on the windows and its rays penetrated through the half-open doors and through the flowers of those old patched, shutters to keep them still on. The old men sitting in the shade kept company, intent on chatting and telling each other always the same things: unnecessary worries and futile gossip; crippled words and always identical phrases, even if they had become real masters to make them appear like new voices. The truth, however, was that they always ended up talking about unemployement, about son of John and Jerry and their lands. Now made to retirement, they had nothing else to do but flirt, worse than those women hidden behind closed windows, waiting to catch some good or bad news to give them exclusivity. Those who owned a piece of farmland were so proud of their vegetable garden, that no one could give same fruit and vegetables as their trees, bragging. There was the - Father - on duty, the one with the classic flat cap, the newspaper in the armpit and the crooked cigarette butt in the mouth; the one with the inevitable black jacket, even in summer, when the sun was so scorching that he could even cook an egg, accidentally, fallen to the ground. Sitting at that cafè as old as the city of Palermo, if he realized that someone was staring at him, he committed himself so much to looking at few figures that brought back the newspaper to convince others, and even himself, toreally read even if he knew doit barely. Nodding masterfully with his head he appeared, to the - prying - eyes which rested on him, like a man of letters, and ended up believing himself to be so.
Opposite the Cafè, about two hundred meters away, there was a club where most of the people, mostly older, gathered to simply have a chat; to spend time playing trump or scientific scopone; to escape the suffocating words of thei wives, who have become like sisters after years and years of marriage. There, in that club, a small boy named Salvatore worked trying to gather what he could. The so-called - brisk miniature chores - , by now, known by everyone in that club, had become their courier. So, when something was missing or someone forgot the bread, he sent that little - all do - happy to go to the right and misses, even to receive a tip: four pennies, for him, however, were a pride. He was dirty, Salvatore. His knees blackened, for all times he found himself bent over the ground to clean his father's tools, an unemployed bricklayer. Those few times poor man could find work, he tried to keep it tight by doing overtime on overtime. He came home every time later, just to be able to get hold of the little effort. Most of the time he was carried out at bargain prices ... and Salvatore, a little boy, just ten years old, always helped him when the father came home at the end of the day, dead tired. Despite his small age Salvatore had already developed a great sense of responsibility, just like an adult.
That - little man" looked at his disenchanted world with those eyes as blue as the sky. He let his blond corn silk hair be ruffled by the wind of life; everything could be believed, except he was a child from the South, precisely from Palermo: a beautiful island where someone, one day, dared to say: "Sun is always present, making jokes even at night." That little guy didn't look like a Sicilian at all, he looked more like a Swedish or so, with his fair complexion, slender stature and that extraordinary height distinguished him from his peers. You saw him there, crouched on his knees, intent on cleaning those few but essential work irons . His father, sometimes, because of tiredness, could not even clean up before going home. Every now and then Salvatore, when he managed to clean one (or at least he tried), scream and ran to meet his father in that narrow and semi-dark corridor, to reach him in the bathroom where he was shaving and tell him:.
- Dad, daddy... Is it ok? -
Gianni. It was his father's name. He looked at him from the reflection of the mirror and then lowered his head with his face soapy with shaving foam, nodding, even if most of the time those irons were dirtier than before. This did not matter to the man, he really cared about was seeing his happy little boy with so little. Gianni knew how important were opinion and encouragement to him, to his son, especially in that place where it was really difficult to succeed. So Salvatore, enthusiastic about father's judgment, ran back to the kitchen to clean up the rest of the tools. They lived in a small village in Palermo, where hunger and misery were a subtle boundary so easy to overcome. Every night the police had a lot to do with micro crime and you didn't have to go far to find yourself at the "Zen", a place renowned for its crime.
That of Salvatore was a family not very well fixed financially, but was honest. Everything could be said about Gianni, except he was a criminal. He was very malleable with his children, but when it's time to address the issue - crime - , he became another person. - Poor yes, but never a criminal! Our Lady will always give us a piece of bread to put on the table in order to feed us. " Gianni used to say this to underline the importance of integrity in everyday life. This was Gianni. He often pronounced those words almost as if they were another commandment to honor, as if the one left by God - not to steal - was not enough. He still had to turn eleven, the little Salvatore, he rarely went to school, always and only forced by his mother Maria. A strong woman, housewife par excellence. If she hadn't scolded him every day, Salvatore certainly would never have gone to that old school like Sicily, but adequate enough to remove from street many of the innocent little ones, who, often and willingly, were hired by adults for purposes not just legal. When police caught them peddling or committing something illegal, they almost always got along with a couple of slaps and a telling-off. Maria did nothing but repeat the same words to him, day after day, like a religious litany: a refrain that Salvatore, by now, ended up hating even though he knew how important and true it was that his mother took care to tell him every holy morning .
"Get up Totò! Without school you can't even be a street cleaner today!"
"I don't like to be a street cleaner, I wanna go to America to make pizzas like Massimo."
This was the big dream of that little man. It seems to be easy, but it wasn't like that, because of his family's economic situation. His father, proud by nature, certainly wasn't downgraded to ask his brother Carmelo to pay him another ticket for his second child and thus allow him to leave, not even think about it!
"When he grows up what he wants to do, he can do it, once my brother's help was enough and it was also too much."
These were Gianni's words about "America" question that Salvatore had so much at heart. He wanted to escape, he wanted to get away from that city, just like his older brother Massimo who, in better times, had managed to leave to go to his uncle Carmelo and rebuild his life. New York, the big apple, full of hopes and beautiful occasions, like the whole New World.
With many sacrifices Carmelo and his family challenged fate, sold everything and set off in search of luck. With sacrifice and commitment, they managed to open a pizzeria in New York and, once started, Carmelo asked his brother Gianni to join him. There was also a place for him or for his son Massimo. Aware of the drastic conditions in which they found themselves, Gianni decided to have his eldest son leave who, once arrived in the United States, no longer wanted to know how to return to Italy. The elders who lived in the US always repeated a sentence to him, jokingly. "If all of us Italians here in America, one day decide to return to our homeland, they should put us on top of each other, because we are so many that there would no longer be enough room for everyone ... We are worse than Chinese!"