Walking into Teatro alla Scala brought back childhood memories pushed away and almost forgotten. We would gather around at the playground at the observatory. We talked about different things and imagined the world that we didn’t have. In the summer, we would stay out past midnight, looking at the stars, talking, thinking, being children. We must have been no more than ten or twelve at the time. (I wonder what my kids will remember about their childhood.)
One of us whose grandparents were from Serbia seemed to have more interaction with the outside world and liked to talk about culture that we could only try to imagine. She would say that the best opera was La Traviata and the best place to see it was the La Scala. Impressionable kids… we had no idea what La Scala, or La Traviata were. We thought that since we were so inseparable, we would always remain together sharing in each others lives. Who would have thought we would end up so scattered around the world…
The walk toward the castle brought forth thoughts of experiences being completely meaningless unless they were shared. Travel has been a chore for me recently but I only feel this way about business travel. If I were here with my beautiful wife instead, the place would take on a whole new meaning. If one thinks of life as a bank account, this trip is a withdrawal. The “account” has a negative balance because the last few months have been almost completely devoted to work … work that in a few years will appear meaningless in the rear-view mirror as our good friend recently reminded me.
Next week’s surgery is almost a blessing in disguise since I’ll get to stay home and be closer to those who matter most without the constant barrage of the urgent and unimportant of this life.