A brief encounter

Dogs were always a part of my youth having a mother that was only at ease when a dog was faithfully by her side, Names such as Pacho, Gigi and Boris come to mind as do joyful moments shared with my mother as she caressed a succession of wire haired Dachshunds one more neurotic than the next.

And so yesterday as I walked up my favorite stairway built at the turn of the century joining the Village of Nocelle to Positano, I noticed a golden haired puppy walking by my side.  As each of the 1860 steps followed each other and my breathing became more and more strained I felt my young companion was enjoying his stroll just as much as I was.  He seemed engrossed in the vegetation on either side of the stairway, bushes of rosemary that filled the air with an aroma of summer, geraniums so strong and colorful all framed in an endless sea of wild flowers timidly appearing after a long winter spent in hiding.

At times my young friend would wonder far and wide letting his curiosity get the best of him only to return eagerly to share his discoveries with me.  I could feel we were enjoying each other’s company just as I would enjoy that of a friend.

Half way up the mountain the stairway finally ends in Nocelle’s little square shaded by a giant tree, and offering a mesmerizing view of the sky cascading into the sea gently embraced on one side by a long windy coastline.  I always stop to drink at a little fountain while admiring the view, and as I did so yesterday I realized my young friend was looking at me and beckoning as he could not reach the water… without a thought I cupped my hands and started to give him some.   At That moment it was not the view, nor my pounding heart that held my attention but my young friend drinking out of my hands… I felt a bond, a closeness and understood why my mother always had a dog by her side.

I slowly walked down the steps with the hope of being followed once again by my friend however he decided more important matters were at hand to be dealt with in Nocelle. How could I blame him, after all the view is the most beautiful one in the world!.

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11 Comments

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11 responses to “A brief encounter

  1. Antonio, your mother! So, so beautiful. And what a great story about your friend who made the journey with you to Nocelle, accepted your generosity and then carried on with whatever business brought him to town. I’m thinking that there was a girl involved. Another lovely blog post.

  2. Mary Lynn

    Wow! I too was stunned by your mother’s beauty, and then your story. A double whammy, in a very, very good way.

    Did I catch that correctly, are there really 1,860 steps to Nocelle? I just started stair walking with a goal of 1,455 which is the number in the Stratosphere tower here in Las Vegas.

    • Yes.. they are 1860 and I walk them every day… I usually take between 20 and 25 minutes.. depending on heat and humidity… come to Positano and we will all do them togeather.

      • Linda S.

        Ciao Antonio –

        I just tried to reply to this post, and the message said “your reply is awaiting moderation.” Am I doing something wrong?

        Linda S. – I am one of Ann’s faithful bloggers.

      • Dear Linda,

        Sorry for not answering your blog earlier… you are very sweet to have written.. we would love to have you in Positano and there are some lovely B&B here that are charming. Have you ever been to the Amalfi coast before… July is a lovely time to come and visit.

  3. Linda S.

    Ciao Antonio –

    I am one of Ann’s faithful bloggers and am happy that she led me to your wonderful blog. I’m enjoying reading about your travel adventures.

    I love this story about the little dog who followed you. I was hoping it would end with you keeping the dog (I’m truly a dog lover). It’s a lovely story, and your mother was such a beautiful woman.

    My mother was Italian. Her family came from a town called Grotta Minardi close to Naples.

    I’m planning a trip to Tuscany in July of this year. I work at San Francisco Opera, and our Maestro Nicola Luisotti and his wife live in Viareggio. I will visit with them but would like to stay in a hotel or B&B close by. Can you recommend a place in that area?

    Ciao,
    Linda S.

  4. Sandra

    Antonio, is that your mother holding one of her Wire Haired Dachshunds? Very beautiful woman, and I can see the loving connection she has with her little dog. I am wondering now what kept the little chap who accompanied you up the steps from making the return journey. Like Ann, I think it must involve a girl. Living in a beautiful place like Positano must be a a bit of heaven for humans and for dogs. I really love your blog, and am so happy Ann Leary has told us about it.

  5. Aislinn

    Antonio, I too am one of Ann’s blog followers, and am delighted that she has directed us to your blog.

    Your write beautifully. I feel as though I am right there with you on your journeys.

    I hope you will continue to share these snippets of your life with all of us. You bring the places unseen to some of us to life.

  6. Brent

    Antonio, I understand where you get your eloquence of language from, your beautiful mother. And the romantic undercurrent that peppers your travel stories should compel you to write a novel about something that occurs at your gorgeous restaurant; a stolen heart or wedding ring, a first time love encounter between two strangers, the strange return of a dog that walked beside your mom, and leads you to some secret and dangerous situation, or just a story of your choosing, since your perceptions are so precise, insightful and create such a sense of wonder and anticipation by your readers. You are clearly a gifted writer, please give us more…Sincerely, Brent

    • Dear Brent,

      Thank you for your kind words which are inspiring. I love writing and will follow your advice, however I feel I need more practice before takcling the task of a book. Thus for a while I will keep my blog active.
      Ciao ciao
      Antonio

  7. Catherine

    Beautiful mother, beautiful pictures, and beautiful writing. Thanks again for transporting me to another lovely place.

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