It was a dream. A recurring one.
I am on a cobbled street. I enter a big stone archway, the other side is a little bit darker. There’s a little water body on the “inside”. It’s very quiet, even during the day, no people around, but it feels safe. I feel calm. It’s lovely.
I have had this dream a few times.
I don’t anymore. Because I think I lived the dream. While walking in the alleys of Rome, I felt like I was where the dream used to take me. Deserted lanes lead to deserted lanes lead to lanes where people are shopping, merrymaking, performing, having their aperitif, and generally walking, lead to piazzas where more of the same happens, around a beautiful fountain, or a cathedral, or some statues. At every turn of every lane, I half-expected my dream to turn real, just as I remember it. That didn’t happen, however, the dream stayed at arm’s length throughout my journey in Italy.
Now let’s turn the dream to black and white. Because dreams are black and white? Or because like Vittorio De Sica’s films, I had loved Italy in black and white the most. The idea to go monochrome isn’t really my own though — Master of None did it with their first episode of the second season — which was the starting point of this idea of a post. They in fact paid a tribute to many Italian neorealist films, the most prominent one being the classic Bicycle Thief — they even named the episode The Thief. I didn’t get anything stolen, not at least in Italy. Yet there’s something in the air of Italy that forces me to relook at everything in black and white. Because black and white is pure, it’s romantic, and it goes deeper than just colours. Much like how Italy is.