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The Dance Collection

The end is only ever the beginning.  


Clouds covered the sky as raindrops fell all around.   He had purposely left their umbrella at the hotel, so his tears would be camouflaged by the rain, as the teardrops of his heart gently streamed down his face.  They didn’t match the fervor of what he was feeling inside, which could only be described as a convergence of opposing emotions.    Why had we waited so long to return to the city of his birth?  Were the memories too painful to recall or too beautiful to forget?  


Once he was a Florentine, not because he had once lived in this magical city or because Italian blood flowed through his veins.  It’s because of what he discovered whilst living here, arguably the greatest of artistic secrets.  A secret that must remain forever hidden, but maybe amongst the clues a certain few will be able to find their way, and so this is where it all begins again. 


His eyes were now focused on her strikingly rich deep dark brown eyes.  Who was this one-of-a-kind Persian Jewish girl that stood before him?  She was indeed a girl unlike any other.  To an onlooker, her hair looked black, but he could see the red undertones mixed with the black and dark browns.  He liked it down, but she more often wore it up.  


The most beautiful women never know how beautiful they are.  It is always this way. 


Less than an hour ago they had arrived in Florence by train after spending a few days in Venice and now they were walking along the Arno, a river running through the city. Leonardo da Vinci’s earliest dated sketch was of the Arno river along with all the natural and manmade scenery of the time.   Many credit it as being the first landscape drawing in Western art.  


Their hotel, The Westin Excelsior sat alongside the river so immediately upon exiting the hotel they were at the part of the river that crossed under the Ponte Vecchio and Santa Trinita brides.  The Ponte Vecchio was the oldest bridge in the city, hence the name.  Ponte Vecchio simply meant old bridge.  In comparison to English nouns nearly always preceded adjectives in Italian and each noun has a gender.   Is it not amazing how an arbitrary noun is assigned a gender?  Much can be learned about a people and their culture by reflecting upon their language. All of the romance languages were derived from Latin, the language of the Roman Empire. 


Once again Drex set his eyes on Leila so he could see the expression on her face.  It was one of pure exuberance.  Leila lived for these moments.  She was the most adventurous girl Drex had ever met, he had never known anyone that lived life so vigorously.  She faced fear through action.  There was nothing she couldn’t do.  Through his eyes and all who knew her, she was a modern-day superwoman.  If the feminist movement wanted to find the one woman that represented the apex of what women could achieve in a man’s world, she was undeniably it. 


From the very first moment, nothing about their relationship had ever been predictable likely because they were opposites.  Leila was as logical as Drex was emotional.  They were raised in completely different ways, having such contrasting experiences during their younger years leading to a myriad of conflicting perspectives.  The list of differences amongst them was never-ending.  However, there was one thing they had in common that defined them.  It wasn’t the main reason why they were together, that would be love of course, but without this commonality, it would never work between them. 


They were warriors through and through.  Both realized that they were constructed more so by their losses than their victories.  They had been on the battlefield so many times, often cut to pieces and left for dead, but something propelled them to get up and continue the fight time after time.  When Leila met Drex, she realized how shattered he was and vice versa.  There was so much they couldn’t see about themselves, so much left to do, and without the other maybe they never would. 

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