Love is all around

by Rebecca Bricker on April 12, 2015


It was a beautiful Sunday afternoon. The first hint of spring was in the air. I was crossing a piazza in Florence when I noticed I was walking toward a man who was watching me.

He wasn’t exactly Marcello Mastroianni.

But what transpired in the next few minutes was straight out of Italian cinema.


Signora…” he said as I approached. He stepped toward me, wanting my full attention. He spoke Italian at first, but quickly switched to English. He raised a hand as if to cup my face, then rested it on his chest, presumably to quiet his thumping heart.

I could have given him a dirty look or worse. I have a male friend in Florence who does a funny imitation of me scowling at him on the night we met, when he followed me out of a bookstore wanting to talk to me.

So much hangs in the balance with chance encounters. You have to decide in an instant if you’ve come face to face with a pervert or a nice guy you’d like to have in your life.

I looked intently at this man in the piazza, trying to find a clue in his eyes. He wanted me to have coffee with him. If not today, another time. I hesitated when he asked how he could reach me. Would I give him my phone number, he asked. Non è possibile?

In the piazza on that spring afternoon, love was all around. Couples kissed. Friends embraced. Children ran gleefully into their parents’ arms. I felt a tug on my heart strings.


But I shook my head and said to the man, “I’m sorry. It is not possible.” From our very brief conversation, I already sensed complications.

He nodded sadly and then kissed me gently on each cheek. For an instant, we could have been lovers in an Italian movie.

I walked away, smiling. It was a lovely spring day in Florence and amore was everywhere. In that moment, that was enough for me.

p.s. The cappuccino in the photo was from an amorous barista in Rome.



Debbie Ferris April 12, 2015 at 10:26 pm

Come on Becky! Go for it! Think of it as something for the next book!

Rebecca Bricker April 12, 2015 at 11:17 pm

I suppose I need to ask myself – What would Jenna do? 😉

Céline Berthelot April 12, 2015 at 10:34 pm

Even just for a moment, what a nice surprise !
Have a great spring time !


Rebecca Bricker April 12, 2015 at 11:18 pm

It’s fun to live a fantasy in the moment. Happy Spring to you, Celine!

Thom April 13, 2015 at 2:51 am


Rebecca Bricker April 13, 2015 at 12:54 pm


Sally McKee April 13, 2015 at 4:53 am

Ah, Jenna. If I have the right Jenna, just the opposite.

Rebecca Bricker April 13, 2015 at 1:05 pm

Jenna from “Not a True Story” learned a tough lesson about missed opportunity and opening her heart to possibilities. But in this instance, I think she, too, would have enjoyed the moment – leaving the rest to imagination (and another book)! 😉

Patricia Lessard April 13, 2015 at 6:39 pm

My heart aches! Becky, that man is still out there, maybe not today, but someday, I have no doubt!

Rebecca Bricker April 13, 2015 at 8:13 pm

No need for heart ache, my dear friend. This is mostly a HAPPY story. Admittedly, I had a twinge of sadness saying no, not wanting to hurt his feelings – but also not wanting to put myself in a situation that I might regret later, especially when my intuition was telling me “no.” But otherwise, I truly was happy to have had the moment, to have been part of life in the piazza that day. As for your hopes about the man who is still “out there” – I’ll keep an eye out for him. Thank you, Patricia. :)

Jackie Lamothe April 23, 2015 at 3:26 pm

I took the chance in Roma many years ago and ended up having such a fine love story. This fellow was not the one for you…your heart told you so.

Rebecca Bricker April 24, 2015 at 8:17 pm

Hearts have a radar system complete with blaring horns and warning lights! 😉

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