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One Saturday morning, in the middle of spring at the beginning of the 2000s, after leaving the municipal library near Porta Romana in the historic town centre, we walked a little excited a few hundred metres along the street and the squares to reach the place where many Ascoli found themselves at the start of that unique emotion of the beginning of a love story.

We gave each other the first kiss.

A few weeks earlier a piece of fruit had introduced us, speaking clearly it made me understand that she was not for me that girl. Maybe because it had fallen from the tree first, trying to “catch” it …

Are you wondering who we were and where we were headed?

I will start from the first question.

At the time, we were two university students at faculties outside the city, of course, given that Ascoli got its own university more than six centuries ago and in a short time.

I was preparing my thesis, between one drawing and another of the sketch for the handkerchief of the district where I was born and raised, after a university “career” not too fast and brilliant.

The girl, who after a little over a year was to become my son’s mother first and after 11 months my wife on the same inverse date between months and years, was a first year university student at the time.

You wonder, two university students after a Saturday morning of study, where could they go and have a chat without too much trouble in the city of a hundred towers?

Imagine the most romantic place inside the historic town centre, where on one side the Tronto river flows in its green bed at over 30 meters below and on the other side travertine walls that hide beautiful medieval gardens.

And all with the frame of several towers, among the very few left of two hundred and the strong and austere medieval buildings. Thus tells the two-thousand-year history of the peninsula city between Tronto and Castellano.

And what about the street, whose name is what surrounds the world, naturally irregular, in the unique bottom of the city in size and length, made of only river stones, which expert hands have chosen to fit together and to last.

There is no getting tired of seeing those stones, different in size and shape, but which fit perfectly together, a bit like two people so different that they fit perfectly.

You have understood?

We were headed for via delle Stelle.

For all the people of Ascoli, a place correctly called “Rrète li Mierghie“, along a river of rare beauty for a few hundred metres that goes from the Ponte Augusteo di Solestà to the church of Santa Maria delle Stelle, now deconsecrated.

Yes, because, on the side of the river, along its entire length, there is a low parapet that seems made for kissing.

In the eternal ritual where the boy sits, while the girl remains standing as long as the natural desire to look into each other’s eyes lasts, and then close them in the moment that contains a beginning.

The story ends here, not before I told you that on the day of our wedding, seven years later, Rrète li Mierghie was the first place where we took photos, exactly where we had found ourselves in the moment where everything it began.

Finally, specifying that the “yes” we wanted to pronounce, a few metres from the “Merlons” in the Romanesque church of San Giacomo Apostolo, that are also an integral and substantial part of this story.

 

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