Can the Marriage be carried out only by myself?

Here I am, to tell the difficult…the unfathomable part of my conscience, up to now at least, with the absolutely not veiled purpose to throw light, admit and forgiven my own and other people’s faults. I think I have always been absolutely protagonist of my life, I have never come to compromises, paying personally the reckoning even when complying with some of them would have made my way lighter but wouldn’t have made feasible anymore an evolution through those trials that I had unconsciously forced myself to do… only aware to be a free… totally crazy! And if our passage on this earth was just an opportunity to try to heal our inner disease? Our madness? A journey in a beauty-farm for the soul? A ransom attempt…

                                                                       Yin and Yang

Somebody succeeded in it, somebody not…Someone kept on living committing crimes thinking they could escape their own phantoms…someone didn’t realize anything…somebody wanted to react and attempt a way out…
I think I’m on the way to recovery from a childish  schizophrenia that made me in life sometimes an angel sometimes a devil to reach now the satisfaction to be only one thing, complete, made up of ying and yang no more fighting with each other, joint on the line of the lowest resistance.

But a month before the wedding…after having an abortion of the baby that my other oneself had so deeply wanted… I was preparing myself to face up life in two in the most total superficiality, to involve in my blind run another person who couldn’t have recognized in me the irresponsibility who animated me…Carlo…
Back from London there had been the preparations for ceremony that for our choice would have taken place only in the Hall, after all we didn’t feel like making a more binding promise, and everything was delegated to mother Vanzina’s organization, who alone knew who was to invite and who not, besides facing the expenses of the event. The only point on which I had been inflexible was the place where holding that invitation: it must be Casina Valadier at Villa Borghese, a memory of my childhood; it served to make me feel at home in any way…When I was a child my mother took me at Villa Borghese at least once a week, she sat at a table in the terrace of Casina while I was cycling free and happy, with a bicycle hired at the wood cabin over Muro Torto, along the tree lined roads starting races with new and extemporaneous mates… in the most absolute freedom…

                   The dehor at the Casina

Sometimes a passage before Casina Valadier to confirm my mother, who had been able to offer it to me, the liking of that day of amusement… leaving then her to get warm at the rays of that roman sun. Casina Valadier had to be and  Casina Valadier was!
The wedding cards were sent but, beside my father and my mother, from my family wouldn’t have attended anyone, while there were pouring in presents from people that I didn’t even know… the home furnishing shop list of Pilar’s mother, Consuelo Crespi  was the most appreciated present and allowed us to order a wonderful small table in briar-root where lay all Carlo’s cinema magazines and my books on Bosch, Magritte and Dalì; a sofa set up with Indian fabrics together with a big pouff with small wheels that Sergio Baldi, Serghiei, just back from India, had helped me to chose: a black cube holder that seemed come out from 2001 A space Odissey,  so much it reminded the menhir of knowledge and… so many, many objects that would have made our new house even more comfortable.

                             Our window  in Via Sistina

We’d found it glancing the estate agencies ads through the Messaggero  magazine: via Sistina 56, fourth floor, two rooms and bathroom, parquet and air-conditioner, lift, 400.000 lire per month…our! In the drawing room, before the windows looking over the capital roofs up to the  Janiculum Hill,  there was a nice wood pannelling bookcase that could host all Carlo’s books, two  table abillèe would have taken place near the indian sofa and…we didn’t need anything else…or maybe yes…but nobody had given us an advise to undertake our life in common and who knows then if we’d be able to listen to it!

                                         A joke: our private wedding card

Also the wedding card made just for us by our friends arrived…the Princess and the Pea who, languidly lying on seven mattresses, was showing interest above all in the particular protuberance in the middle… due to the presence of her bridegroom at the base! Incredible… they had understood everything; instead of feeling in any way hurt by that caricature I was enthusiast: it portrayed our reality in a perfect way… nothing to say!
On June 24th my father arrived too but on that morning I was engaged with Dino Risi in my personal farewell to the spinsterhood and I met him only when he came and call me to the residence to take me to the Campidoglio, the Roman Hall.

                                                              Going in

He was sun-tanned, smiling and everybody was mistaking him for an actor filling him with pleased pride while he offered me his arm giving me away to the room of the wedding.
Lando Buzzanca tryed to distract the bridegroom with the quip “a call for Carlo…”, our two mothers were crying crocodile tears and Mario Monicelli as witness for the bride would have soon forgotten every duty bound to that position to listen only to that suggested by his desire.

                              Beside us …my father and mother…togheter

My father came back to Alassio at once and from the party at Casina Valadier was absent also my mother, who retired crying for the too many emotions: seeing my father once more had caused in her the sudden awareness of being alone and  not desiring to be so. The invitation from Mario Monicelli to reach him the day after at Spoleto to be present at the première of Flaiano arrived in the nick of time…I needed a father who replaced mine, so hastily disappeared from my life without asking, advising and informing about our projects.
The horror of the void doesn’t fill up by itself…orror vacui, now I know…we must be responsible for the others and live in their responsability.

Back from the honeymoon trip to Canary Islands, spent reading “Harold e Maud” by Colin Higgins… riding on Tenerife beach and venturing on the moon plateau, I took Carlo at work every day on the set of the movie “Vogliamo i Colonnelli” trying to spend the most possible of the time near Mario whom I drew self-confidence from letting me be charmed by his biting way to analize society, by his ability in don’t giving a damn about patterns and rules…I remember the breakfasts with Magni on paper tablecloths in the roman buiaccari in the  via Flaminia behind the Fono Roma, at the Quercia near Piazza Farnese or again above Circo Massimo.


Carlo and me in the evening came back in our new house in via Sistina where I cooked delicious veal escalopes with marsala or lemon sauce… only those… because I couldn’t do anything else but warm up pulped tomatoes Campbell… we liked taking a bath together, plunging naked in the bath full of hot water and so play and excite our senses… we read Playboy before going to bed… or, to better say, to the “envelope” that Carlo required perfect, with sheets turned down without a little crease on the coth.

                                                    The view from our front window

Those readings made us come the idea to call a then rising photographer, Bruno Oliviero, to ask him to immortalize my bare beauty and our wonderful small house. So had origin the article that portrayed me unveiled on the eighth issue of italian Playboy… I couldn’t slightly imagine how much scandal and disapproval would have provoked in my family… I knew only when I was back in Alassio how much regret I had caused. To prevent its reading my father and my uncle had bought every issue of the magazine existing in the newspaper kiosks from Sanremo to Savona delegating, to the recovery of those magazines, my cousin Paolo who piled all them up in the coffer of Bank Galleani in the seat before Alassio railway station. In a letter to me my father expressed all his dismay for the fact that my husband had permitted and supported this last foolishness of mine… receiving it I felt only a feeling of anger for that opinion expressed by a person, my father, who had never made anything to preserve my life… He had brought me into the world forgetting to give me some instructions to manage. No, he was hiding himself behind those words, it was not about  me that he was worrying but about the scandal that the delivery of that magazine had caused in the small town where he lived… even if, I must admit, he couldn’t have liked seeing his daughter bare at the newspaper kiosk close to his house… even if it was a smart nude!

                                                 The magazine cover

“We want the Colonels” kept on with the dubbing of the characters that surrounded the leading character Ugo Tognazzi with the wonderful interpretations of Faa di Bruno and of the remarkable Carla Tatò…

             Caracteristic picture of actor Antonino Faa di Bruno

One of those afternoons, accomplice an exchange of notes, I had received from Mario  the invitation to spend some hours in the residence Velabro making come true my dream of being loved without condition by a new candidate father, letting me be carried in plays bigger than me forgetting any previous bond. It surprised me to come to know that a relative of ours was watching over us and was therefore informed of my treason, since I didn’t consider it so, I didn’t think to do anything bad…I lived my life…and so?…it was only mine and nobody should have bounded it!

                                                 Portrait of Mario Monicelli

In the evening when I came back to Carlo I forgot everything, I still succeeded in splitting and I devoted myself to him as if nothing had happened… at least till when the tedium of my life reappeared with the desire to exceed again, to feel strong emotions, my heart throbbing as a protagonist in the absolute beliefs that I wasn’t hurting anybody… It was normal… it was part of life and people whom I was sharing its moments with  took part in my experience with passion but without devoting themselves to understand, to investigate my sentiments… at the first difficulty they would have disappeared like my parents… you couldn’t trust on them and that allowed me to think that I wouldn’t have respected them.

“Damage Fatale” a very nice movie by Louis Malle drew the attention just on the riskiness of people who had suffered a damage at the beginning of their life, that pain suffered had made them indifferent, that first treason disrespectful of other people’s feelings as if nothing was important… poor Carlo, in which arms he was sharing his sleep… the feeling that livened him up was only passion, not love, coming out of it wouldn’t have been easy… I should recognize and recover from my illness, from the damage… He had to survive me!

At Christmas we left for NewYork with Steno, Carlo’s father and director of the movie “Anastasia my brother” played by the great Alberto Sordi. I’ve never liked metropolis and I’d have recalled that year in New York for the gratuitous violence that  animated its streets.

               Central Park

The movie sponsored by De Laurentiis took in the troupe in the hotel behind the producer’s residence near Central Park and the more famous Hotel Pierre. At the entrance a porter with belt and handgun came and opened to us… we occupied an entire floor where, owing to the blocked windows, it hovered about the smell of the sauce that mum Vanzina cooked for the national Albertone in order to not having him suffering for the  “saudade” for Italy!

      Alberto Sordi plays the role of a priest

If we went out was worse: the taxis in NewYork were provided with a grating between the driver and the passengers, an identification photo informed the travellers about the identity of the car’s owner and just he had the possibility to close hermetically from inside doors and windows. I didn’t like it at all, those were all antisocial acts, overwhelming even if shortly we’d have tried out all its usefullness. Through the rear-view mirror the driver explained us that he had blocked the doors because the driver after us would have revealed a raptus of rage shortly after… fed up of waiting after our taxi standing at the red traffic light at first he sounded the horn more times then… got off from his car he began to assail with kicks and blows the doors of our car… in the absolute general indifference!

                                               The hall at the Guggenheim museum

That town was to me dreadful, it was more like a nightmare than a pleasure trip…. wonderful the Guggenheim Museum, charming the clubs opening on the day whose they were dedicated sheltering “live” the exhibitions of singers like Eric Clapton at Tuesday or Crosby Still Nash & Young in an unforgettable tuesday evening, or the overcrowded jazz clubs where Duke Ellington lorded it up to dawn.
Terrible the ambience that lay heavy on our heads in the night when, like Peynet’s lovers  we asked to the taxi driver in shift to drive us to the  Hyppopotamus to dance and… this, maybe to teach us how to live, left us before the club… yes… but before the Hyppopotamus of the blacks! Come in in the darkness we should have sat at the bar to realize to be the only whites in a night club of all blacks… as well as the object of the amazed looks of the presents… they were looking at us as if we had been a rara avis… to squash shortly after! With many apologizes we took our leave… in the shortest time!

One afternoon I was walking along a Lane that was crossing  the Fifth Avenue looking for a hairdresser when I noticed a knot of people halting in the middle of the road looking upstairs… I asked why… someone pointed me the top, there was a man on the point of committing suicide from the eaves of the eighth floor of that building and shortly after, they explained me, he’d have thrown himself providing an unusual show to the bystanders…
I ran away horrified… other people’s life was really without any value up to that point… up to become a pastime, only a gruesome show?  No, I couldn’t manage to resist other seven days in that city that, besides resembled me so much as it was in that moment… exaggerated by every value’s absence.
I stopped at a public telephone and called the only person who could help me, my friend Franco Rapetti… I implored him to send me a prepaid air ticket for the day after, december 31st …
In the morning of the last day of the year 1972… by surprise I invented an excuse for Carlo and family and sneaked away, without a penny in my pocket gripping strongly only my freedom… another time sure that this was the only right thing to do…slip away! Slip away from that city before the unexpected happened…

Copyright © Ely Galleani Blog. All rights reserved.

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