3.13.2009

That was a solidly good day

I encountered this character on the way back to my apartment and he made me think.
I got up this morning (or afternoon), sat in bed with Bethie for a couple of hours, then decided to get dressed. Pulling on my gray suede boots, I wondered what I should do in order to have the "that was a solidly good day" feeling later. Answer: take Astrophil (camera) and wander.
I encountered the usuals - the golden statue man at the Uffizi, the enamored street vendor who asks for my number, countless caricature artists, etc.
A few hours before I opened my eyes this man woke up and put on his usual outfit - a bright purple suit with green shoes and an orange tie. While I lay sleeping, he tediously put on his grey wig, makeup, and applied the stiff-wired hat to his head. After doing that, he casually walked out of his apartment and out into the Florentine sunlight.


Somewhere during each of our days, our paths crossed. I stood there taking pictures of him, he obliged, but made a subtle nod to a hat with coins inside. I nodded back to put him at ease - we were business partners now, our relationship sealed with a silent and intangible handshake.
At the end of our encounter I fulfilled my promise by tossing some change into his earnings and he beckoned me closer. Stepping out of his pose, he took my hand and pressed it to his lips as the others around us snapped photos. As I began to walk away I saw him feign a love-sick swoon so I turned to pose with him for brief time before strutting off for good, the sound and rhythm of my heels making it sound official.
I had a solidly good day. Did he? How does he feel when he returns home, removes his costume, and becomes just another normal face? Does he think, That was a solidly good day, made some money, I should probably feed the cat tonight?
For some reason I'd like to picture him just as he is during the day. That's just who he is. Upon leaving the Piazza della Republica he goes to a bar with his friend who is feeling extra contented and wearing his favorite suit - a neon blue satin suit with a silver tie. They commiserate on how their hair just doesn't stand on end like it used to and stare enviously at the young bartender who has magnificently stiff neon green locks.
The two men head home to Dr. Seuss-like flats complete with their hot pink cats that snuggle up close to them, purring, and beds shaped like clouds, resting on feather-like trees while I sit here musing on extreme lifestyles.

2 comments:

The Inner Marker said...

you are on fire, racheo!

Susie said...

I can so see the bar scene and the apartments they went home to. I would dearly love to have overheard their conversation in the bar. Did you hear it and if so, can you tell us what they said?

my hat is old
my teeth are gold
i have a bird i like to hold
my shoe is off
my foot is cold

Ah Dr. Seuss! One of the great things about being a Mom. You get to read Dr. Seuss books.

XO