Thursday, May 22, 2008

The bright side of the moon - Monte Generoso

Looking around to all the smiling faces you meet you start wondering what's the drug they're on. And you realize what it is, because you're taking it too: sun. After long rainy summer days, just as you were beginning to ask yourself if sunny days were but a memory of your oblivious self (but still counting down the remaining rainy days from the 110 of this Lugano year), sun has finally come out. But it's not sun the prima donna of this story, because sitting on the top of Monte Generoso at exactly 21.35.44, the queen of night rises in its shyly pink manner: full moon. The clouds are bowing their heads in respect, hiding in the valleys, letting the peaks proudly present their bald heads. It's time to descend on the path smoothly covered by the moon rays. A chamois leads the way for the first ten meters, then jumps to a place we are not so readily eager to follow... Lugano lies happy at our feet(some 1550m below), Italy is covered by a pink smog clearly showing an industrial, non-evironmental friendly country. A fox sneaks through the grass, starting off as we approach. The bells of the leading goats are graciously breaking the silence of the high pastures, just as I almost graciously break my neck gazing to the landscape bathed in moonlight instead of gazing to the stones on the path. It is surreal, and look what's that? an elf! no, it's even better - a fox cub. It's so small and confused, but it surely runs fast. Faster than the 3 cavaliers we meet running up the path. It's a good occassion for me to find out that the dialect spoken here is more similar to Romanian than Italian is:) There are suddenly so many roots around, as if we were in the woods. Hey, we are in the woods! The moon is sending its ray-messages through the trees - some of them reach our feet, which is a softer alternative to the stones:), others just brighten the elves' mysterious playing grounds. It's midnight when I leave the land of elves, knowing in my heart that I will be back again.

...that is the question

"So what's special about Romanian mountains?"
The question makes you raise an eyebrow and you remember the freezing night in the tent, with rain pourring in and the 3 of you crowded into each other, eating the last crumbs of bread and onion. In the morning the sunrise over the sea of clouds makes you feel like a king, and you're ready to wander again the green pastures and dark forests, competing for the wild strawberies with the bears. And getting down to the hidden village, an old lady sees you and asks smiling "Mai copii, unde ati fost?Nu va e foame?"("Where have you been kids? Are you hungry?")
"Nooo"; and in that precise moment you remember the mixture of strawberies, bread and onion you've eaten for the last two days. But the old woman knows better, she milks the cow bringing fresh warm milk and cheese with a "drob de mamaliga" (a chunk of polenta). It's the best food you remember you've ever eaten and the 5 star cook from the best restaurant in the world cannot beat that. All these pass before your eyes in an instant, while you're still hearing the last sounds of the pending question:"So what's special about Romanian mountains?"
"Nothing in particular."