Dear Francesco,
I woke up this morning to the sound of your bike shoes click clacking.
For a moment I thought I was dreaming but I wasn’t, I heard a bike and a person moving up and down the street.
Celestino heard this too and moved himself to the front door.
Such a familiar sound.
Click clack and the spokes turning , the signal you were home.
That big smile approaching us all, coming up the drive after a long bike ride.
I’d complain you didn’t wear suncream when you cycled, you’d insist you didn’t need it because of your skin condition.
As I realised this morning that I wasn’t dreaming, it hit me.
Grief hits you .
Out of the blue…
Like a smack on the face you weren’t expecting.
A sound we hear, a smile we remember, a song that comes on the radio.
I did what I always do.
I got down on the ground and hugged Celestino.
He put his paw on me, as if to say:
“There, there, mummy, it hit me too”.
Later I went about my day.
I visited designers in the nearby town, I felt content to know such kind people.
I helped a friend with his idea.
I felt happy to have such a good network.
I prayed for a parking space, you delivered it.
I prayed for a siesta you helped me sleep.
I felt grateful for our new form of connection.
I washed the dishes and in my stillness, in the silence of my tiny appartment, it hit me again.
Because grief hits you.
“How am I doing this, how am I still here without you”?
I thought about my family.
How far away I feel from them at times.
I wondered how they are coping.
I thought about how we humans never really talk about loss.
How many suffer in silence, maybe because it’s easier?
Maybe because we don’t like uncomfortable conversations?
Later I went to our friend’s party.
I prayed you’d help me through it.
He was a good friend to you. To us.
I thought about you a lot.
I couldn’t wait to get home to Celestino.
He reminds me of you.
Vocal, playful, loved by all and with grey colouring that looks a bit like you.
We went for dinner together at a simple place.
The local bar, Pink Lady, I’m glad that I can eat alone, sometimes I even prefer it.
Cele keeps me company anyway.
I ordered your favourite, Piadina, a very thin dough bread typical of Emilia Romgna, with a hint of lard, grilled and filled with cheese, rocket, mayo and ham.
I sipped our friend’s wine, I Pastini, the last project you worked on was for I Pastini.
I remember your frustration.

And your LOVE ❤️

You loved problem solving, you loved to get the job done, you loved to love .

It occurs to me now, the greatest lesson you ever taught me was to love.❤️

Now I love easily.
Now I love deeply.
Now I love without limits.

Thanks to you Francesco ❤️

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