Tuesday I arrived in Bologna after a short train ride from Rimini where Niamh was already waiting for me at the station. Niamh is an Irish girl, a friend of Roxana who is the sister of Radu, a close friend of mine from Romania. That’s how the stars aligned and I got to stay at her place for two nights and spend some amazing time with her. I think I never talked so much with someone during my trip as I did with her. Mythology, nutrition, life, death, science, the Universe, Irish and Romanian humor and lots and lots of other things. She also did something similar to my trip, but for charity. She and a friend raised money for charity by traveling from Ireland as far as they could without using any money. I felt that no one could understand my concept better than her. She’s also a Virgo, she also teaches acting, she also loves to travel, she always questions authority and has this relaxed view about life. I had my most intense introspective moments during this trip thanks to the discussions we had together.
On Tuesday evening we got together with Roxana and her boyfriend and went up on a hill from where you can see the beautiful city of Bologna. It was great to see Roxana again and to talk a little bit of Romanian after more than a week of not meeting anybody from Romania. On Wednesday I just hung out with Niamh, had some walks around Bologna and discovered some of its famous and cool places. We went to the whispering walls, where you can talk with someone from more than 5 meters away by whispering into the wall. She told me that they built those walls so that a patient who was suffering from the plague could talk with a doctor without getting too close. While we were just chilling out in the sun I discovered my eyesight is getting worse, as I couldn’t read some of the letters from the distance that she could easily distinguish. Maybe my eyes are tired from all the shootings that I had in the last month, maybe it’s the constant staring into my phone and computer or maybe it’s just age. My birthday is coming soon so maybe this year I’m going to buy myself some glasses for my 33rd birthday.
Thursday at noon I left Niamh’s place and went to shoot with Elis. Elis is a young girl from Rimini who works as a model from time to time and who participates in beauty contests. She found out about my trip when I was already leaving Rimini, so she came to Bologna to support my project and shoot with me. We met at the station and started walking around the city, looking for cool places to shoot. Bologna is so amazing that every 10 meters we found a cool spot with beautiful colors, beautiful architecture and amazing light. Her half Albanian half Greek green eyes where shining no matter where we decided to stop and shoot. We took picture after picture from noon till almost 8 PM with just a little break for lunch. After that I accompanied her to the station where she offered me a train ticket to Florence for Sunday. Then I went to meet Lina, a Colombian girl who studies Economics in Bologna. I found her via couchsurfing.com and I will sleep at her place until I leave to Florence. We had a beer when I arrived and we laughed for more than an hour about stereotypes and human behavior, especially about men not being men anymore, that emotionally unstable type that are always complaining and never knowing what they want from a girl.
While we were staying on Lina’s balcony looking at the sky I saw my first falling star. I’ve never seen one before and I knew that this can only be because of Niamh. Her mythological stories, her belief that we are all made of stars and our talks about how we are all connected had a powerful resonation on the night sky and showed me that she was right. My first falling star was telling me to move on with the trip. Or maybe I’m just interpreting it the way I want to. In any case, Florence, get ready on Sunday cause I will be there!