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Saturday, July 12, 2014

The Roads around #Ravello 5. (Serialized Story in 12 Parts) by John von Daler

                     Having arranged these matters I then took my leave of Francesca, promising to return in time for our dinner. Taking my violin under my arm, I sped through the garden to the secret door at the end of a narrow path and finding the bottle of Ravello Wine of Darkness which I had for a rather large payment gotten Mario to conceal for me in the high grass outside the door, I strode down the road towards Scala and towards my goal in Ravello.
                   You should know that the inhabitants of Italian mountain villages divide the population of this earth into two categories: not, as you would
think, into men and women, for God has done that for us, but into mountaineers and lowlanders. If you want to traffic with them discreetly, you
must learn the rules of mountaineering. Of these, all of which I of course have mastered, there are two which are important to our story: 1) never dress in mountain clothes when walking in the mountains and 2)never stay on the mountain roads. Dressed as I was in discreet, English tweeds I then attacked immediately the second of the two rules. Finding a stairway discreetly hidden
from the view of possible wandering lowlanders I plunged down the steps and out of the view of the passing traffic.
 With my violin under my arm and my bottle of wine in hand I skipped down the steep stone stairway whistling an aria from Mozart’s Don Giovanni and improvising third and fourth part harmonies just to keep the performance interesting. Now, stairways of this kind, like hidden serpents, coil and fold, uncoil and unfold constantly. What once was out of view suddenly comes precisely into view and with the suddenness of a roman candle what was hidden from view springs into sight: in short, I came to a road crossing. Now any mountaineer knows that the end of a hillside stairway always is extended on the other side of the road by the beginning of a new stairway, so on and so on until you reach your destination. Thus I sought and found a new opening on the other side of the public road and plunged once again into a concealed stone stairway.
 On this stairway I was, however, not quite alone. At the other end, just about to cross the next road I saw the back of a beautiful young woman,
dressed all in black, with Raven-black, shoulder-length hair and with the forthright step of a young man. She strode along confidently, evidently also
on her way to Ravello. I thought, one plot is never too good for a sub-plot and decided to follow her as closely as possible. Without caution or thought for life and limb I threw myself into a chase that indeed lead me physically into dire straights, but I am bound to add that metaphysically speaking I had found someone more than my equal. (to be continued...)

Order my book: "Pieces: A Life in Eight Movements and a Prelude" (WiDo Publishing) from your favorite bookseller.

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