The obvious part of this story is the one that I won’t write about. And yes, it was fantastic, like Rome 2. You can read my blog post to learn about that experience.

Jessica has a charm that is difficult to describe. She has black eyes that shine with her smile and enlighten everything around her and nicely styled curly hair where you can be lost trying to delight it.

We had an incredible weekend that I almost forgot what happened in Italy and Iceland. However, the most bizarre occurred the day before Jessica’s flight to Morocco. While having lunch in a restaurant near the Jet d’Eau, Pietro appeared.

“Get the f*(K up the table, Jessica!” He said.

I was shocked and, furthermore, petrified. I wasn’t expecting any of this.

“I won’t do what you say anymore, Pietro; leave me alone,” Jessica contested.

I decided to intervene to protect Jessica, but Pietro took Jessica’s plate and smashed it on the floor. So I was back on my seat, scared like a child watching a horror movie.

“I found them,” Pietro said, and Jessica changed her mood immediately.

“I am sorry, Benjamin, I have to go.”

“No worries, Gunst, you won’t see her again.”

Five minutes later, I was still there sipping my red wine and trying to understand what had happened. The waiter came and cleaned Pietro’s mess and asked me if I wanted more wine. I asked for the whole bottle.

Later I regret this decision as alcohol is costly in Switzerland, and it is twice the price in front of the Jet d’Eau.

So I still don’t understand the matter with Pietro and Jessica. What’s the meaning of “I found them.” Why Jessica said Pietro was in Italy while he was here? Should I give Jessica the benefit of the doubt?

At this point, I don’t think polyamory is something between them, but Pietro seems to have some control over her. I believe they still have some physical connection involved.

Italy was no different than this time, except for the violent part. I had the feeling that they were in a relationship. However, with the “I found them,” I got confused. While in Rome, I felt sorry for myself being involved with a lady who didn’t communicate with me properly. Now I feel sorry for her because she is definitely into something shady with this guy.

While paying the astronomical check in the restaurant, I found out that Jessica had left a business card on his chair. The card said:

James Punjabi

Flugvallarvegur 15, Reykjanesbær, Iceland

I put the address on Google Maps and couldn’t find the location. I couldn’t find anything about James Punjabi as well. What was that business card? Did Jessica leave it by mistake or on purpose? There wasn’t a phone number or an email address.

I don’t think I have more time for this madness. Now I have to focus on my last week in the Schengen area before Russia continue advancing.

I have an important update on my relationship with Jessica: she is leaving (me) again.

I definitely don’t want to talk about the details. But Pietro, from Rome, is still alive. She invited me to bike to Switzerland, and I rejected the idea of being close to him. So full stop, no more love, no more beautiful chaos and no more Rome.

So I am back to basics again; I am Benjamin Gunst, a Canadian freelance Graphic Designer and Digital Nomad. I love meeting new places and dream of visiting as many countries as my life permits.

Next stop: The Vatican City.

After the infamous event with Jessica occurred, I decided to go to Bukowski’s Bar to forget everything with the help of alcohol. I chose the place because of the name and nothing else. The place decoration and music selection marvelled me so much that I decided to drink a few more beers there; therefore, I met Giovanni.

Giovanni is from Bellinzona, Italian-speaking Switzerland and is in Rome working as a Pontifical Swiss Guard of the Holy See. The next day was off for him, and he also had some things to forget with alcohol.

Giovanni’s wife and daughter had returned to Ticino. He didn’t want to mention why or if they lived in The Vatican with him, but he was profoundly sad. “I just hope I see my little Aurora again”.

“What’s your plan for tomorrow?” he asked.

“So far, having a reason to wake up”.

“I’d give you one. You are one of those crazy travellers, right? Do you want to do a Vatican Tour guided by a Swiss Guard?”

The next day I was in The Vatican with a resident, an actual, local resident of the smallest country in the world.

I will honour Giovanni’s request not to disclose what happened there. But I just want to say that I was fortunate to meet him and see all of The Vatican’s wonders with an actual resident.

Next week, I went to Roma Termini to repeat goodbye to the beautiful and chaotic city. Giovanni also came to say bye. This time was no rain, no protests, and Roma Termini was clean and bright. I am just grateful that I had one of the most significant experiences in my life, thanks to Jessica. I wanted to tell her but was still not ready to do so. She might be reaching Switzerland now with Pietro.

Next stop? San Marino.

Coming from Scandinavia, landing in Rome could be a bit shocking. The colours, the weather, the loudness, the flavours, the art, the history, the origin of the western civilization, the Romans always protesting, the straight southern Italian communication forms, the yelling, the wars, the passion, the garbage, the expression, the freedom, the people, the wild boars, the Romans, the most prominent ancient capital, the city, the chaos… the beautiful chaos.

Rome’s beautiful chaos is like a relationship with a person that your conscious self knows won’t go any further. But still, your soul and body want to be involved (or revolved) because, irrationally, it enjoys the beauty created in the clashes.

Adding taste to the notes of my arrival, it was raining. I believe Rome has to be the only city in Europe where the touch between a raindrop and the asphalt determines the neurotic state of its residents.

So, talking about making irrational decisions, there was Jessica, a Bahamian, worthy daughter of Neptune that just came out from the underworld to the land of Bacchus.

After five hours, which included heavy traffic, waiting for the luggage and learning the poor life decision that encouraged my Argentinian taxi driver to relocate to Italy, we met at her hotel. We didn’t talk. As Roma’s ancient traditions demands, we came to the city to be gladiators. We didn’t come to engage peacefully but to clash our bodies and souls with the adversary expecting to win or die pleasingly in battle. 

It feels great to be in Rome.

I took advantage of the ride from Aarhus to Randers with Mariana, and we reached there in 40 minutes. I didn’t know why I was expecting a long trip (at least three hours), then I realized I was in the city next door. Anyhow, I gave Mariana money for the gas. Still, it was less than the train ticket (they are costly in Denmark).

While in Randers, Mariana met her cousin/friend Ida, and I decided to go to Randers Regsnkov, a tropical zoo in the middle of Northern Denmark.

The Randers Regnskov Tropical Zoo is a climate-controlled zoo designed to be comparable to three tropical environments worldwide. These climate-regulated zones are under three domes, The South American Amazon Rainforest, the Asian Mythical Southeast and the African Savannah.

Half of the animals are in free roaming, which was very curious to witness in a Scandinavian country.

I loved seeing a lot of kids marvelled by turtles, snakes, and monkeys, which made my trip.

After leaving the place, I headed to my cheap hotel to shower and rest a little before dinner with Mariana and her cousin Ida at her house. They wanted me to bring wine.

One more thing that I discovered: alcohol is costly in Danish bars, so drinking at home would be convenient to save money. Denmark is the only Scandinavian country without alcohol monopoly, so you can buy it in any supermarket. I passed for a REMA 1000, a popular discount, and bought two bottles of some Spanish Tempranillo. It wasn’t the cheapest but also not that expensive. I think I’d look fair choosing an intermediate option, in a country where alcohol is anyway expensive.

I met Mariana and Ida at her place in Kristup, a family neighbourhood of Randers SO. Ida was charming. To be honest, I cannot say that Ida was beautiful; she was beyond that. I have to confess that I think I haven’t seen a most beautiful girl like her.

Ida was Danish-Danish with a Colombian-Danish mother (How she is related to Mariana is super complicated to explain here). So, she has all the graceful Danish characteristics: a detailed perfect smile and nose, blue eyes, yellow-to-white hair like the first solar light of the morning. She has a gracious corporal language, similar to a formal noblewoman who trusts you with her deep secrets. Ida was like a The Lord of The Ring Elf but better. She also had something of Latina inside and didn’t feel like a cold person but appeared to have a warm heart. Physically she was more Scandinavian than Latina, but she had some Jennifer Lopez curves that flashed me when I said ‘hello’ for the first time.

The conversation was fluent. However, they weren’t surprised by my trips (I don’t think any European will be). I learnt more from South America from Ida as she had lived in Medellin for 2 years (but she was born and raised in Denmark). Mariana and Ida mentioned the Red-footed Tortoise were very common as pets in Colombia. I was marvelled by it since I took many pictures of them in Randers Regsknov because I found them exotic. They laughed about it. I felt great.

We spent the night chatting about turtles, Randers, and Colombia while they made fun of my awful Spanish. It was an unexpected night full of brightness and unexpected feelings.

Nonetheless, I realized that even though I love this travel and working lifestyle, I think it cannot be forever. I believe there might be a place outside for me. A place where I will fit like a piece of a puzzle that disappeared a long time ago. I believe that there is a place where everyone is waiting for me to come to find some kind of meaning.

I don’t think I am going to buy Tempranillo anymore.

Before saying goodbye, Ida invited me to show me the city the next day, and I was happy because I thought I liked her. But life is strange, and sometimes when you feel your life is going in the right direction, a new challenge appears.

“I know you might be mad at me. But I still think about you. Come to Rome and meet me. I will be present this time”. Jessica texted during my last sip of wine.

I said yes to Ida. It would be a mistake not to go out with that woman. I don’t know what to do with Jessica, and I don’t want my heart broken again.