- Summer Guide
- College Guide
- Author Interviews
- Celebrity interviews
- College Articles
- College Essays
- Educator of the Year
- Personal Experience
- Travel & Culture
- Current Events / Politics
- Drugs / Alcohol / Smoking
- Entertainment / Celebrities
- Love / Relationships
- Movies / Music / TV
- Pop Culture / Trends
- School / College
- Social Issues / Civics
- Spirituality / Religion
- Sports / Hobbies
- Community Service
- Letters to the Editor
- Pride & Prejudice
- What Matters
L'Amore da Italia
“Do you remember the day we first met?” asked a young woman. Her dirty blond hair was pulled back in a ponytail, sitting on a couch in her cotton pajama shorts and gray tank-top. She was sitting next to her fiancée of nearly a year, Alex Romanti, a tall, muscular man with brown hair so dark, it looked black, in his boxers.
“Of course I do, mia bella ragazza,” he answered in his thick, Italian accent. “Era il quattro di Aprile. The warm spring of the year 2000. Ho passato un ristorante quando io ti ho vista. I knew at once you were my bella.” He smiled the most beautiful smile known to man, showing off his unremarkably white teeth. Alex put his arm around her, giving her a gentle kiss on the forehead, then her lips.
“I love you my sweet, darling Michelle,” Alex murmured into her ear.
A loud noise abruptly interrupted her deep sleep, causing her to jolt upright in a matter of seconds. Once her sight was focused and her mind was clear, she realized that the loud sound that had ended her sleep was her alarm clock. It was early in the morning; too early, in fact, the sun just finishing its rise out of bed. Michelle rubbed her face and quickly turned towards the calendar to see what the date was. April fourth. Her birthday. Time seemed to go by so fast. It definitely did not seem like the year 2000 to her.
She had only worn an oversized shirt to bed because of the unbelievable hot and humid weather here in Rome, Italy.
“I’m hungry,” she said out loud to no one but herself. Michelle picked up the room service phone, speaking once hearing the usual “Buon giorno”.
“Si, puoi fare tre uove con salame e un pezzo di pane con la Nutella, per piacere?” she asked in her amazing, thanks to her Rosetta Stone learning tape, Italian.
“Si, si. Il cibo sara pronto in venti minuti,” answered the concierge. In that time, Michelle took a nice, cold shower. When she came out, wrapped in a white, cotton towel, the food was there, warm and looking very delicious.
“Come to mama,” she said, licking her lips. She wolfed down the exquisite breakfast in a matter of minutes, giving a huge sigh and patting her stomach when she was done.
“Happy birthday to me, happy birthday to me, I’m now twenty-three, happy birthday to me!” she sang to herself softly, smiling.
The movie they were watching, “Fever Pitch”, was paused. Michelle was in the kitchen, cutting pieces of leftover tiramisu from the wedding party they had in Italy with Alex’s family members that couldn’t make it for the rehearsal dinner and wedding. Alex was in the bathroom.
“Honey!” Michelle yelled to him. “Do you want un pezzetino di tiramisu?”
“Si!” he yelled over the flush of the toilet. They joined each other on the couch, snuggling in each other’s arms. The movie resumed.
Michelle waved her hand in the air, signaling a taxi. Once in, she directed him to a specific address. The taxi stopped in front of this small café in the middle of the city. She checked her watch. It was nearly noon; the time she was meeting her friend at the café.
“Grazie,” Michelle said to the driver as she handed him fifteen euro. She walked inside the café and ordered a cappuccino and a chocolate croissant. She sat down at a table by the window, giving her a great view of the Coliseum. She blew on her coffee than took a little sip. Then, out of nowhere, a voice spoke, ending her daydream.
“Hey, sis! Happy twenty-third! Oh my God, it is beautiful here. And there are soooo many cute guys! Did you now like eighty percent of American women who visit Italy marry someone from here? Or at least I think it’s eighty…I’m not sure…” said Katherine, now deep in thought about whether she was right about the facts or not.
“Hello to you too. Are you going to get something to eat or anything?” Michelle asked. Katherine nodded. She was gone and back in seconds with an iced coffee and a toasted bagel.
“You are so American, Katie. When you’re in Italy you have to live the Italian way. That’s the only way you’ll get the best experience,” Michelle stated.
“Pish, posh. Who cares? I just want to meet some hot Italian guys.” Katie paused, as if staring at something. She was. “Like that Godly body right there,” she said, pointing out the window. And what Michelle saw out there was a Godly body. The man was tall and muscular with wavy hair so dark it could be black. The man’s head turned towards her. He smiled a beautiful, sweet smile, showing off his white teeth, at her. She smiled back. That whole time, Michelle’s eighteen-year-old sister was looking back and forth at the two of them, mouth wide open.
“Oh. My. Freaking. God!” she said in a shrill that caused some people’s heads to turn in their direction.
After the movie was done, Michelle and Alex slid under the covers of their bed, tired as can be. “Buona notte, Michelle,” Alex whispered as he put his arms around her. “In three days time we will be together per siempre. To be married on the same day we met, and your birthday.” No reply came from Michelle. Alex looked over her shoulder, and saw her eyes closed and could hear her usual light snore. He kissed her on the cheek, then let sleep overcome him.
“Michelle, he TOTALLY likes you. I mean, seriously, did you see that smile?!” Katie declared excitedly.
“Katie, why would he like me? Do you know the last time I had a boyfriend? Sixth grade. And all we did was kiss each other on the cheek,” Michelle said. “So it would be crazy if he did. I wouldn’t know what to do. I’m like Steve Carell in ’40-Year-Old Virgin’, except I’m twenty-three.”
“I know you haven’t done it Michelle, but this could be THE guy. I wouldn’t miss this chance if I were you,” Katie said.
“What chance will the ragazza miss? Asked an unknown voice of a shadow towering above them. Both of them looked up at the same time. It was the guy from outside the café. “If I were you senora, I would go to Venezia. Have you been there? And Napoli. Napoli e bellisimo.” Michelle just slightly shook her head.
“Ah. Well, then I’ll have to take you myself. Mio nome è Alessandro Romanti. Or Alex,” he said, once again smiling his beautiful smile. He extended his hand out to Michelle, and slowly, Michelle took it and shook it. His hand was soft and firm at the same time. They kept on shaking each other’s hand; gazing into each other’s eyes when a “cough” interrupted them.
“Well…I’m gonna go now,” Katherine said to Michelle. “I’ll be at your place at seven for out little birthday party for you.” She walked around the table, bending down to give Michelle a hug and kiss. Then, she walked out of the café.
“Posso sedermi qui?” Alessandro Romanti asked.
“Actually, I need to go,” Michelle said. She wanted to get out of there as soon as possible. Alessandro looked disappointed.
“Well, signorina, before you go, I ask you one question. Vorresti andare a cena con me questa notte? Per piacere? Your sorella would be happy.” He smiled.
She would, Michelle thought. Extremely happy. “Fine,” she said with a nod. The whole café, who had apparently listened on the whole conversation, broke out in claps and cheers. “When?” she asked curtly.
“Alle otto,” Alessandro replied. Michelle walked out of the café and hailed a taxi. Once she got in she couldn’t help but break out into a smile.
“Everything’s all right, right? It’ll be fine. Fine. Just Fine. But I want it to be great! Will it be great? I don’t know. I want it to, but it might be just fine. Oh God help me,” Michelle ranted. It was the day before the wedding, and the rehearsal ceremony and dinner was taking place at that moment.
“Mia bella, andrà benissimo. Il matrimonio andrà benissimo. Calm down, my angel,” said a calm Alex Romanti. “I promise nothing will go wrong” In the rehearsal ceremony and dinner, everything was perfect. Tomorrow, the actual wedding day, would be even more perfect.
The Wedding Day: April 4, 2004
Alex and Michelle were facing each other, holding hands. They had exchanged their gold wedding bands. Alex was in a “Reaction By Kenneth Cole Two-Button Notch Lapel” from Men’s Wearhouse while Michelle was in a white “Satin A-line Halter with Split Front” from David’s Bridal. “…I now pronounce you husband and wife,” said the priest of the Cathedral of the Blessed in Sacramento, California. To Alex, he said, “You may kiss the bride.”
After the ceremony, Alex and Michelle were headed off on a honeymoon in Italy. “I promised you I would take you to Venezia and Napoli,” Alex said to his new wife Michelle.