Updated: Jan 2
Extract from 'I am your mirror' photography project di Loredana Denicola
Then, I met my eighth stranger.
Her name is Giorgia. I called her the Poetess.
With the Poetess, everything took a different direction.
It was I that approached her – she didn't know anything about my project.
She didn’t see any advert on the internet. She didn't send me any email.
I chose her moved by intuition, by positive energy. I followed my instinct.
Everything was different: I felt stuck, maybe because she was a woman.
In fact, she was the first woman who agreed to take part in my project.
‘I Am Your Mirror’ project includes ten men and three women.
One of them is myself: twelve strangers plus me.
I remember perfectly the day when I met her.
I was working at Bank station.
I was taking my break standing outside the Royal Exchange, during lunch time, when I saw her coming out from the Royal Exchange.
She was alone.
She stopped by the steps.
Her beauty captured me.
She looked like the women, in old pictures of ‘La dolce vita’ by Federico Fellini; like Sofia Loren, when she was young.
She was in a tiny dress, light blue in colour, accompanied by white tennis shoes. She had long, light brown hair and big dark eyes.
I looked at her in awe, fascinated by the way she was moving.
She had the kind of grace that is a pleasure to behold, and that has you feeling transported, fascinated. She lit a cigarette, and smoked it.
I didn’t know what to do.
Indecisive, I hesitated, but only for a few seconds. I made up my mind to go and meet her.
I headed towards her, got closer and said – ‘Hello, do you have a spare cigarette for me, please?’
She said – ‘Yes, of course’ – smiling.
She looked down, opened her little red bag, and took the packet of cigarettes out. They were Malboro light, and she gave one to me.
‘Thank you’ – I said – ‘you are very kind.’
I lit it and smoked, looking into her eyes.
Then, to break the ice, I began asking questions, as I normally do, if I am interested in knowing people – if they are friendly.
We started to talk ...
She was looking for a job.
She had been living in London for a couple of months, and she had been in the Royal Exchange to hand her CV in at the bar. She said that her friend was working there, and that he might be able to help her find a job. She had previously worked as a waitress in Italy in agritourism, during the summer holiday, close to Venice.
While she was talking, I realised that she had an Italian accent.
I said –‘Are you Italian?’
‘Yes’ – she replied – ‘are you Italian as well?’
‘Yes, I am Italian’ – I answered.
We laughed. At that exact moment, I understood why I was attracted to her; there was that kind of Italian vibe, and passionate nature and beauty, that was calling me.
She said she comes from Venice.
‘And you? Where do you come from?’ – she asked.
‘I come from the South, the opposite side of Italy from Puglia’ – I answered.
‘Puglia is a beautiful place’ – she said – ‘I have friends there and sometimes I go and visit them, during the Summer, for few days.’
‘Why are you here in London?’ – she asked.
‘Because I am on a existential mission’ – I answered – ‘I will go back to Italy as soon as I am finished.’
I laughed at my answer. I don’t know why I answered in that way.
She was very young, 21 years old, and you could feel it, looking at her skin, her smile and her eyes.
On top of that, she was beautiful.
She reminded me of what ‘innocence’ is.
She had an interesting aura and I wanted to know her. She had eyes of innocence, the face of an angel, the personality of a dreamer and a smile that hides pain.
She said that she was living in South London, in a flat with other people; that her dream was to become an actress, working in a theatre and doing workshops. She had clear ideas about what she wanted to be in life, and she looked more mature than her age.
I liked her.
Then, I introduced myself.
I said that I was a photographer, and doing a project called ‘I Am Your Mirror’.
We said goodbye. She texts me in the evening giving me her phone number.
.... to be continued on 'I am your mirror' photography book by Loredana Denicola
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