Konttori was the most celebrated nightclub in town, though certainly not the best, on top of overly priced: its long admission queue led the customers, past the bully bouncers, to a local densely permeated by cigarette smoke, puddled with beer and carpeted in glass debris, with a narrow and stifling dance floor and the worst-tempered staff imaginable. However, inexplicably though it seemed to me, it was the chicks’ favourite pick, and therefore also the guys’. After all, its reputation wasn’t altogether unjustified – or at least I used to get lucky there, my expectations were seldom disappointed.
That was my last night in Konttori. It was in fact my last night in town, as a few days later I was bound to leave the country for good.
Posted in one of the strategic corners, stout in hand, I was keeping a watch on the entrance door, checking on the convex-gendered newcomers and on the chicks around, like a vulture in check for a prey.
The woman appeared suddenly in the focal point of my retine. She was neither too pretty nor too young, but — her eyes beaming with a natural smile of their own, she was one of those rare owners –should I say portrayers?– of an ineffable something around the countenance or bearing, some I-don’t-know-what that seemed the quintessence of sympathy, an inborn elegance in demeanour, the ultimate sparkle of intelligence, a something that lent her an unmistakable and irresistible allure, making her conspicuously outstand the others.
Nonetheless she was in the company of a man, and I quickly consigned her to oblivion.
A while later I crossed them on my way to the dance floor, and I was surprised to hear my own voice unexpectedly saying: ‘you’ve got something special!
–Thank you! So do you’, was her immediate reply; and a broad smile on her mouth underlined the other smile on her eyes. But we kept our own way.
Further on, we came across again. She was now by herself, her companion nowhere to be seen, and, stopping by me, she endowed me with a resplendent expression of gratitude:
–I wanted to thank what you told me before– she said.
–Not at all. I wasn’t flattering you –I replied, looking for my words–: I just couldn’t help uttering what my mind was thinking. You have that charismatic something… a natural radiance onto your visage, like a glamour… a kind of luster that outstands. Instead of dodging my stare, you looked straight into my eyes…
–One thousand heartfelt thanks! –she almost shouted–. Yes, it’s true that our nation suffers from an excess of shyness. But please, don’t ever stop doing what you’ve done. Please don’t stop stating those thoughts!
I hadn’t ever met a woman so grateful by a compliment, and I wondered if she had been told anything similar before.
We talked for a short while, barely long enough for learning her name — that I have now forgotten. Then we heartily shook hands to the last of our words, prolonging –probably longer than necessary– a contact that had turned into a caress...
–May you have a beautiful life –was her farewell sentence; and before turning round she sent me on her fingers a warm kiss that I –clumsy me!– didn’t manage to intercept, and got lost in the smoke, the music and the clamor of Konttori.