Live from Koeln…

20 Lug


I am home, bery tired and a bit ill; just a cold, but considering the unusual heat of these days in Cologne I feel particularly bad. I am also very tired, which does not make my mood any better. I am spending lots of time with my kids, something beautiful, but also very very tiring. I need some rest, maybe some vacation, but for the time being I feel like vacation is resting at home.

Summer has been great so far here. Nothing comparable to the neverending rain we had last year. Obviously also nothing camparable to South of Italy. But this is an advantage, for I really do not feel like sweating at night and going Ikea to profit from the air-condittioning there. I guess one of the thing is we do nt have a car yet here, and commuting is not that easy with grumpy kids. So, you may have an idea of how I feel. A but feeling blue.

I also noticed that my post are getting shorter and shorter; now, for instance, I am very tired. Many people would say that writing is relaxing and helpful when one is stressed. Not for me, at least for what concern the first aspect. When I am tired I do not write well, and thoughts do not come out of my mind.

Keith Jarret’s live in Koeln is one of the most famous solo-live of a jazz player. It was Jan. 24th 1975. Cologne must have been terribly cold as always in january. Jarret played 4 pieces which he invented at the moment, in one of the greatest improvised live show ever. It was also the first jazz show at the Opera House in Cologne, and because of this the organizers were only alloted a spot at 23.30, after an earlier opera performance. Needless to say, even that late the show went completely sold out. Jarret could not have his favorite piano. Due to a misunderstanding, the orgwnizers could only get him anothe rone which was half broken. Jarret had to change his ways of playing to fit in with the charateristic of the broken piano. The result was one of the greatest piano concert ever. And what a story!


A day at the zoo…

7 Lug


We’ve been spending a nice day at the zoo today, me, myself, and the kids. A part from the fact that thickets cost way too much than I am willing to pay, the place is really nice and the kids really loved it. Yet, what they actually love the most is the playground in the zoo. It’s in front of the elephants, but amazingly no kid pays attention to the animals: they all prefer playing, against us parents who feel like we have to teach’em loving nature. Which is a lesson we shall all understand: do not propose your kids anything else than what they really want.


Anyway, days are running fast, the more you fill’em with things to do, the more they vanish. Today, for instance, it has been a very busy day, after the zoo we came back home, the kids took a bath while I cleaned the apartment, then I cooked something for them and put’em in bed.  And that’s what I will be doing right now: get some sleep, I am tired. It’s been a beautiful day, sunny and warm, a day to remember, altough it will be forgotten quite soon. But things you regard as forgettable are more likely to form the basis for everlasting memories. It’s time for a rest now…


3 Lug


As the night falls silence finally enters the room as rest becomes real. It has been a rainy day, more than the previous ones. At the minute I am relaxing, or trying to do so. This is a very hectic period, with plenty of things to do and many things I would like to do but cnanot, like meeting some friend. The advantage of this weather is that one can sleep without asfixiating after 20 minutes, which is what happens in my home town. Indeed, recently my daughter thought she may prevent us from sleeping anyway. Yesterday she woke up describing a nightmare: a butterfly stole her socks. It would be so nice if all nightmares were like this one, isn’t it? Enough for tonight. I felt like writing, but after starting I realized I had very little to say, just wanted to share silence during a chilly summer evening.

Still here…

29 Giu


I wasn’t gone for real, I am still here. It has been a while since the last post, and since then much has changed . Mostly for good, ‘tough good things always brings more responsabilities and fears. I have a new job, back in my old town, at the University. It is just a 3 yrs. contract and nothing more, but it is still something allowing me and the rest of the crew to survive. It is going to be hard however to leave the rest of my family here in Germany for the long winter semester of ordinary teaching. Loneliness will be a problem and the awareness of being able to help only indirectly, through the money I’ll be sending, will surely be frustrating. But it is a beginning, or might be one. Something that may lead to more stablity in the future, but it is obviously early to say. I still haven’t realized whether or not I am capable of handiling the pressure of not having certainties. Sometimes I feel like I am ok, other times I feel frustrated and accordingly envious for those who already reached their target. I also feel that I am still far away from the goal of becoming a decent parent. I am well aware that such category does not exist as such; by “decent”, however, I mean someone who is not scared and anxious about what he’s become over the last 5 years (and it’s not over yet). When is this going to end? I mean, not the parent thing, I know that I always be a father; but the anxiety issue, the fear to fail, to make mistake, not to be loved, the fear for pain, grief, sorrow. I guess we are all afraid about that, but some more than others, and I am among these, like it or not (I am talking to myself now). So this cold summer will pass and with it countless thoughts and concerns, thousand “and what if this or that happens”. We’re in no full control, and what depend on us is often blurred by fear of hurting or being hurt. One can only try to sleep over it, hoping to forget about all this ‘till the morning come.


25 Nov


November gave us the sun, a long awaited sun, the sun we missed the whole summer. The days are passing by smooth. In spite of the temperature, the sun appears day after day in the early noon. The sky becomes suddenly clear. I’ve been thinking quite a lot lately about future. What a news, isn’t it? Well, but I am thinking often about the future that will be in 3o years or so. Maybe because I naively see that age, hoping I will still be alive, as the realm of quiescence, where all concerns I have now will be gone. That’s naive, isn’t it?

I’ve been spending lots of time with the children over the last months. I love it, but sometimes, before going to sleep, I looked at their beautiful innocent face (well, not so innocent, sometimes), and I think about the world they will beliving in. I think about what will be left of all the hugs and kisses I give’em as the years pass by. They won’t remember, of course. They won’t remember the sweet words, the funny jokes, the games we’re playing together. Why then I am doing it? Biology plays no role. Is there something they perceive without awareness? something, that is to say, that will be left of all the love we’re giving’em, even though they wont have any memory of it?

A famous writer of the past said: “we read to know we’re not alone”. I suppose one can say the same for all the kisses you gave your children, all the tears you washed away after the little tragedies they experience every day (lost toys, arguments and so on), for all the lullabies, for every time you fell asleep with them in their bed, for all the sleepless night, for all the time they laugh because of some stupid thing I’ve done. I suppose one can say, I do all this because I do not want them to be alone.

Where the wild things are…

10 Nov

I’be veen spending lots of time with my children lately. I definitively like it. And they like it also, expecially when they ask for a tale or story. In fact I tend avoiding telling classical fairy tales, nor do I insist on the Disney narrative, which nevertheless, to tell the truth, they do not dislike. Not, nothing like that. In fact, my children learned how their father got his ring on his finger ring: once upon a time, as young boy, I was walking with my little borther in a deep, dark, wood. Suddenly, however, we fell into a hole and found ourself in a cave. As we tried to figure out where were we and how to get out of there, we heard someone crawling towards us. The creature named Gollum approached us, his orrible features, his voice, everything suggested that our end was approaching. And yet, suddenly I got an idea: I gave him all the bread we had in our bags, and in that very same moment we ran away. However, just before leaving the cave, we saw something shining in the rocks: it was a ring, a magic ring, the very same ring I am wearing now, a ring that makes all wishes come true. And that’s how we managed escaping the evil Gollum and the creatures of the woods.

Or they’ve learned about their father’s fate once, when as a young boy he got lost in the sea, after surviving a huge storm. He ended up in small island called lilliput, full of strange little creatures identical to men, but much much smaller. Or they’ve learned about the story of their father and uncle escaping from the castle where a huge and hungry giant lived.

I believe it is important for them to learn how to deal with fear, even when hearing stories before going to sleep. I want them to face how things are, instead of believing everything outside to be just like a Disney fairy tale. Well, I do not know whether this work; but they love it, they love getting excited, the suspense; they love hearing the story of Odysseus, in an abridged version of the Odyssey which I prepared for them. They love the suspence, they hear the story as if they were sitting around the fire listening at the amazing adventures that took place long long ago, and they love to see that, in spite of all dangers and fear, theyr father, the main protagonist, is still alive, there, in front of them. For them this means a lot, it means that, no matter what, there is always a way out and here always be one. ‘Cause I cannot promise them happiness; I can try, but this is nothing that can be thought. But I can tell’em that it’s gonna be fun anyway, out there. And this story has not been written yet.

I am still…

5 Nov

Home is ready, almost. We still have to funrish properly the living room. By now it looks like a deposit-that-wanna-be-livingble, but maybe knows it cannot. Anyway, for the time being it has been used as a dormitory by three friends of ours, who liked it and were confortable with it. These were nice days, I mean those we spent with them.

In late summer I’ve been craving a lot running away, moving from Italy to come here in Cologne. I still like it, but predictably things always change and our perception of them changes accordingly. So there is a part of me that keep saying that, no-matter what, we’ll try to stay here, even if had to change job and give up with the academia. Another part of me keeps beliving in ambition. Today I sumbitted the online application to a big job in the States. I do not really feel guilty about that, not really, but I am well aware that this is really a choice I’ve made, which teherefore will eventually affect other people life. Let me explain it better: coming here was indeed a choice, but somewhat there was no doubt it was the best and almost only thing to do. Moving to the states is not the only thing we can do, it’s not something we are obliged to do. It is somehting I do because eventually I would get a very good position, and from this the whole family could nevertheless benefit. Moreover, I still cannot figure how much the rest of the crew liked the idea.

Days are passing by pretty much one like the other, there is nothing bad in this, I guess that for most of us the monday to friday routine is the same. In the evening I read a lot. G.R. Stewart’s Earth abides, recently, which I alternate with some academic book with some good narrative in it. The first cold had arrived: it’s been going on like this, ups and down for some weeks. First cold, then a bit warmer, the cold again. Not particularly rainy I must say, something which for Cologne is quite surprising.

I wish I could write more here, but as I said before I am not really a blogger. So do not expect consistency. Do not expect either picture of me; as you may have noticed I always post music videos. All of them mostly relates to what I write. But I must confess, this is also because I do not like myself much in pictures, and I lack a bit of self-confidence in this respect. Sometimes it is better just to go to sleep a bit, I really need it in this period. I tend to fall asleep in the Institute at around 2.30pm. I always try to take a nap just sitting there and closing my eyes. But I still did not realize whether or not people find it unappropriate.

Anyway, tonight’s gone, the toughts too, and the future is always a foreign land, in all senses.