Saturday, March 28, 2009

a sunset couldn't save me now

You have tamed me
Now you must take me
How am I supposed to be
I don't have my thorns now

Oh mia Italia. Sometimes I forget just how much of a majestic beauty you are. This trip to Piedmont has reminded me of just how incomprehensible is the magnificence of this country. I have greatly enjoyed my first day back to the Alps in quite some time. Santiago and I are staying at the beautiful Kempinski Pragelato Village and have spent every possible moment out in the snow. I had my first snowboarding lesson today and was doing quite well until one human's scent hit me like a ton of bricks and I lost my concentration. Santi had quite the laugh at my expense as I lay face down in the snow. For the rest of the day, I enjoyed taking it easy on some of the less difficult ski runs. San on the other hand, decided to show off for the mortals and had a good sized crowd watching him snowboard by the end of the evening. I shall have to remember to talk to him about blending in while we are not in the comfort of Volterra.
When the sun started to set, we left our equipment at the hotel and went to watch the sunset over Lake Maggiore. It was quite literally breathtaking, even for one who has no breath. I am determined to watch the sunrise tomorrow morning. After the sun had disappeared completely, San and I went for a leisurely walk with the moonlight reflecting on the snow around us. We certainly had a lot to discuss.
For starters, we talked about our own personal histories. We've known some of each others, the basics, but never really the deep details. San knew more about mine, but he's always been very quiet about his past to all of the Volturi. I knew he had grown up in a broken and dysfunctional family. His father was an alcoholic and abusive towards his mother and himself, as well as his younger siblings. And yet his mother loved his father endlessly and couldn't bring herself to leave him. This was the first time the idea of love had left a bitter taste in his mouth. Santiago left his home as soon as possible and joined the Chilean navy. At the age of 23 he was serving aboard the Blanco Encalada when the Chilean Civil War began in 1891. He was one of the handful of crew members to survive when the "Blanco" sank, although just barely. He was taken to a hospital that was sympathetic towards the congressional rebels. There he met a pretty young nurse who helped him regain his strength. When he was healed, he went back to the congressional navy. He wrote to the nurse almost every day. He was sent to La Placilla where the final and decisive battle of the war was to take place. He didn't get her letter informing him that she, too, would be there tending to the wounded on the battle field until it was too late. He later found her body. She had been caught in the crossfire while tending to a wounded rebel soldier. The battle ended and the rebels had won. Santiago had sustained several minor injuries that would not have nearly killed him, had he sought medical attention. As distraught as he was and having no where to go but a broken home, he wandered from town to town until his strength gave out and he laid down to finally die. Fortunately, or unfortunately, however you view it, a nomadic vampire was passing through the same town. Santiago doesn't know who his creator was or why they took pity on him and changed him. He only remembers waking up to discover what he had become and decided to leave his metaphorical heart behind now that his physical heart was no longer beating.
I apologize for the lengthy sidetrack, but I feel it is necesary to understand both of our histories in order to fully comprehend the situation in which we now stand. Santiago has gone nearly 120 years without feeling the need to truly love anyone around him. I, on the other hand, swore to give my life to my God over 400 years ago and have never felt the need to go back on my promise. Neither of us know where we are headed. Was that kiss simply a result of the pressure getting to both of us and the fear of not seeing the other alive again? Are these feelings merely an illusion? The need for two lonely people to find someone to belong to? Or are they genuine? We don't know what to do now. I guess we'll just finish this trip and see where we go.

Listening to: Regina Spektor - Baobabs