26 May 2009

La Dolce Vita: Part I

Amelia looked beyond the bricked roof tops and the potted plants that seemed to line every window sill, she was familiar with the sight of the houses by now, the whiff of freshly baked bread and the cyclists below. This was her life for the next few months and she was going to make it worth her while, she had always dreamed of living in Italy and at last she got her wish. It was everything she had wanted and even more then she had imagined. The locals were friendly and welcoming and she had, had dinner with Giovanni and his family in the apartment below. They also owned the bread shop at the bottom. Amelia closed the windows quietly and strode across her room, grabbed her satchel of her materials, a canvas and a jumper and headed out.
Amelia strode onto the cobblestone road and collided with one of Giovanni's little ones, Nikos. He had a black blunt cut and he was being ushered by Giovanni's wife Roberta, towards school presumably.

"Ciao Amelia," she smiled, "I hoppa you sleep well the night."

"Fine thank you and you?" Amelia answered.

"Buon, buon... good good," Roberta smiled and she waved frantically away as she ushered little Nikos away.

Amelia walked slowly up the cobbled street, towards the beach. The town was still waking up but she could see the first hoards of tourists climbing out of their coaches and into their hotels in the far distance and some of the locals opening shop. She found her usual spot, near the beach and set up her materials. There was something calming about painting in a sleepy town, she didn't feel pressured to finish and she could work accordingly. She wetted her palette and began to paint slowly, capturing the glow of the sun all around her. It was well into lunch time when she finished her first canvas. She stowed it away with Alessandro in his cafe. She smiled and went back to her apartment to retrieve yet another canvas.

He clutched his holdall to him and got out from the coach. He had vacationed here when he was a child and never forgot the sleepy town. He only came here to escape the craziness of fame. Fame. All he ever wanted to do was act but he just couldn't deal with price of fame. People wanted to know his whereabouts, who he was dating and whether it was evident that he could be gay? He usually laughed these rumours off but it got to a point where it had left him claustrophobic and in need of a change of scenery. He didn't check into a hotel because that would draw too much attention to him, he opted to stay in a small apartment across from a bakery. It was away from the touristic parts of the town and at this time of year, there weren't many tourists anyway, so he was yearning for the peace and quiet.
He still wore his black leather jacket, complete with black beany and black shades. He was the epitome of undercover-esque and he was dying to fall back and sleep for a hundred years. He walked about a hundred feet and could smell the tantalising smell of fresh bread lingering in the air, his stomach growled. Great! He was famished. He continued walking realising where the smell was coming from and it came from a bakery right outside his apartment. He smiled in acknowledgement, he would drop his stuff off, grab a shower, slide into a pair of slacks and a linen shirt and make his way over to the bakery, first he had to find his keys.
Amelia walked down back towards the apartment, it was a beautiful day and as she approached the entrance to her apartment, Giovanni came out with panic written on his face.
"Are you okay Giovanni?" Amelia asked.
"No, it is Nikos he had an accident at school, I must go and see him but I can't leave the shop..." he muttered.
"I can take of things while you go, my Italian is pretty basic but I think I can get by," Amelia offered and with that Giovanni kissed both her cheeks, grabbed his wallet and flew out of the shop.
Amelia locked the gate between her and the pavement. She looked around at the bread stall and at the bread baking in the oven. It was pretty quiet for this time of the day, so she took out her sketch pad and a pencil and started to sketch out the street before her. She loved the simplicity of life here and she really respected and loved Giovanni's family. They had taken to her too, whilst at dinner they kept referring to her as their little piccola whilst they urged her to eat up and then eat more, even when she said she was full.
A shadow crept onto her sketch pad and she looked up into solid green eyes, "Posso aiutarlo?" Amelia said and the stranger before her winced, she said it again and he said in articulate English, "I'm sorry, I am still to improve my Italian, do you speak English at all?"
"As a matter of fact I do, can I help you at all?" she smiled.
"Yes, could I have some ciabatta bread please," he smiled back.
"Yes of course, how many would you like?" she asked back.
"Two please, for the moment," he replied back. She hadn't noticed who he was which was a relief. He watched as she put two ciabetta loaves into a bag and handed it to him. She smiled and took the money and registered it in the till.
"Thank you for coming, please come again." She smiled and he smiled back. She watched him move away slowly and disappear in the apartment block opposite the bakery. Oh, she'd never seen him there before, she knew that the apartment before her was empty but suddenly was occupied. She shook her head and continued sketching into her pad.
Rob got to the stairway of his apartment and peered out onto the street, he couldn't help but look at the woman sitting in the bread shop sketching away and he noted, she was a good artist too. When he was approaching her, he noticed the gleam of her brown chocolate hair and how it spiralled down her shoulders and rested just below her breasts. She was wearing a dark aquamarine top that tranquilised and captured the colour of her hair and the redness of her lips were full and red. He mustn't develop a crush on the bread shop girl, as he couldn't afford to right now. He was drawn to her, somehow and he didn't know quite what was drawing him... the bread or the woman behind it. He broke off the ciabatta and made a quick sandwich and distracted himself by putting on the television.

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