Another death, another italian trip
I don’t remember the last time that I visited Italy in September.
I left home in 2001 (a day after the 9/11), and for the next 8 years I’ve either travelled there from London in May or over Christmas.
From South Africa, where the planning requires considerably more money and time, I usually came back only in July.
Unfortunately death is something that doesn’t really give a crap about your schedule or your strained finances (that are still tiring to recover from the European tour in July).
Death sucks. It happens and you can’t do much about it, you can just insult it (him/her?) and try to make arrangements to go to a funeral or to see if the situation in the family is ok.
You see, my uncle died. After my grandpa earlier this year, this just helped me think that 2009 is not a great year (let’s not even talk about my dogs’ accidents and me losing the local football league at the last round just some days ago).
Just like 2005 (and my good pal Rob remembers well) I wish I could just delete it.
But I can’t.
So I decided to board the (almost) cheapest airplane and fly to Italy to check on things. I wasn’t too worried about my uncle’s family, after all he has been sick for a while and in the past weeks the doctor warned them that the clock finished its ticking and every other minute was a gift.
I was more worried about my dad.
Of the three Olgiati brothers, he is now the last.
The youngest, but the most nostalgic of the three. Life for him has been strange.
All his life wanted to retire, live surrounded by family, kids and grandkids, and enjoy his old age, and maybe die in his own garden, in a Don Vito Corleone fantasy, picking tomatoes.
It didn’t happen this way. Not with my mum (who now goes under a new surname), and not with me, always too far from home.
At least he always had his brothers. The older one died in 1992, probably the year when our extended family suddenly shrunk and our Christmases became a more intimate affair among survivors.
Unlike them, he never stopped drinking or smoking. Tino and Giulo (the names of the brothers) tried to live a healthier lifestyle, but now they are both dead.
I’m sure there is some sort of lesson to be learnt here.
This is why I boarded that plane, leaving South Africa and my life behind for a week, from Monday to Friday.
My goal? To spend some time with the old man, and to try to reconnect again with my past.
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