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I’d often pass that little street in the old town of Bologna where Pasolini lived for many years. I’d look up at the windows and try to imagine which one he used to look out of.

Via Borgonuovo is just a few meters from the beautiful Piazza Santo Stefano. They are connected by a narrow street whose medieval atmosphere is enhanced by dancing shadows and a peacefulness in which the only sound is trickling water from an old drainpipe and there is the expectation that Nosferatu might appear from one of the cracked wooden doors of the houses within.

I used to live nearby. I remember the day I moved to
my flat very clearly. That morning I’d left home early
to catch my train up 4 metres from the sea. Tracks of
the past
that do not exist anymore.
I joined the throngs of people doing the same and boarded the train. With my head pressed against the window I watched the miles of water lapping the
rocks contemplating a new era in my life until finally
I arrived in Bologna.

The train was late as usual, but my friend Viktor was waiting for me.

“Do you remember the Fibonacci number series?” I asked him immediately. “Mm, no, I don’t” he replied quizzically.
“What about the exhibition we saw? Zero to Infinity? Mario Merz?” I pursued.
“Now that I do remember! Those neons! Why on earth are you thinking about that?” He questioned.
“I was wondering if Pinocchio’s nose grows with the same rhythm”.
“What? Are you crazy?” He exclaimed.
“No, but I’ve been standing like a sardine for 5 hours and I was thinking about everything and anything, even Pinocchio’s nose.”
Vicktor shook his head and laughed, “now I know your nuts!”

“Oh damn it” Viktor stopped in his tracks.
“What’s wrong?”
“I forgot the union demonstration. We can’t go through town by car we’ll have to walk.” 
Opening the boot I picked up my three suitcases and with Viktor carrying the rest of my things we headed off on foot.

We, men and women of this country have to struggle in order to have equality among us, for everybody to have the possibility of a better life and be free. Prime Minister, stop lying! It is time for change! We will not accept your excuses anymore”. The union leader was bellowing from the stage and the crowd was applauding with enthusiasm. In fact, so many people had turned out to listen you’d have thought it was Obama on the podium.

We were sweltering in the heat trying to make it though the crowds when Feltrinelli's display caught my eye. I shouted at Viktor to stop a minute. There were new books about environmental issues, politics, art and
films
.

“You’re always the same” Viktor sighed. “You’re addicted to books!” I laughed.
“Come on then, let’s go.” And I continued to heave my bags along behind me.

We got to the entrance of a red building. The main door was open. On the right of the entrance there was an exploding post box, full of postcards addressed to previous tenants. There was also a brochure about a movie by Godard they were showing those days.

Exhausted, we took the lift and finally reached my new flat. It was the first time I used my keys. There were loads of things to do before I would feel at home - put some photos on the walls, take down all the posters that had been left (except for the one Bononia Orchestra and the one for Via Ventura in Milano) etc.

Viktor was impressed by the big windows and the spacious balcony with flowers and luxurious green plants, whose branches intersected with each other and created interesting textures.

A couple had lived there before me with a child. They’d forgotten some of his games: a series of simple and coloured forms which were lying in a corner with a little car and plastic bricks.

Viktor stuck his nose in the room that I suppose was some sort of studio with drawings and prints recently inherited by the landlord were hanging on the walls. In the middle of the room there was an elegant desk with locked drawers...
                                                        
                                                      to be continued

 

 


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