Achille’s tale

Con grande piacere do il mio contributo a questo gruppo, grazie
Pino
(Li ho solo in inglese 🙂 )
Stories of old
Achille’s tale
Achille had come to India with his girlfriend Lucia by land on his Volkswagen beetle. They arrived in Goa and rented a little house on the beach and started living the sweet life. He was short, had watery blue eyes, thin blonde hair and a fair complexion, so his skin was always red and he suffered a lot of sunburns. Lucia was a dark haired italian girl with big brown eyes and a nice tanned body and of course her presence on the beach didn’t go unnoticed. In a short time she left him to follow an american sadhu who, with his long blond hair and colorful rags, was so much more exotic and appealing than poor pale Achille. So after trying everything to get her back but to no avail, he decided, in frustration, to leave and go back to Italy with his VW.
They met him in Kabul in October of 1973. Being italians they chatted with him in the restaurant of the Green Hotel and that’s how they came to know his story. The guy was really depressed, all his hunger for adventure was gone, this was not the journey he had dreamed of with his lovely Lucia, when in the cold evenings in Verona, they talked about India and the mystical beaches of Goa. So this is how the idea was born. They were looking for somebody with a car or a van. The cold winter of Kabul was at the door and it was time to move to the east. ” Listen Achille, we could become partners in a run to India, you have a car and we have the dope and we know what to do”. He definitely was interested. He didn’t want to go back home anymore. Maybe he saw in this new adventure an opportunity to conquer back his sweet Lucia’s heart again. He would have had money and he would have showed her who he really was, a real adventurer and a smuggler. So they had a deal.
The job was done in a few days. The beetle was packed with top afghani hash and ready to go. The only problem was that they didn’t have all the money to pay for the hash so it was decided that Franco would stay in Kabul as a “hostage” until the money arrived. He gave his passport to the afghans so they were sure he could not leave. The loaded VW left for Pakistan on a cold sunny day and Franco began his wait. Winter was creeping in and the days passed. Finally a telegram came :” We are through” That was good news. So now it was just a matter of waiting. Yes waiting, but it was getting too fucking damn cold and the money was low. He was tired of eating kebabs and onions and was longing for the sunny beaches of Goa. ” Gotta do something. Like that Animals’ song said : we gotta get out of this place “. He bought a passport with his last afghani from a danish guy who needed the money. Then he went to see the afghans and said that he needed his passport for a couple of days to renew his visa but he would leave another one, a danish passport of a friend of his, and please keep it safe, it’s important. They agreed and gave him back his passport. After a few touches of ink by an italian artist to extend its validity he was ready to go. The next day at dawn he was at the bus station. He was happy to leave, the cold was getting unbearable. He boarded a bus and at the end of the day he was in Peshawar. He arrived in Bombay and found the rest of the company lodged in a nice hotel in Colaba. They were surprised to see him opening their room door. ” Yes guys I could not stand waiting anymore for the money to come and it was getting too cold so I decided to join you and enjoy life in Bombay ! ” They worried about the afghans but it was decided that one of them would go back at the end of the season to bring the rest of the money and a present and that’s what they did a few months later . The dope was sold and Achille got his share. He felt like a rich man. They saw him a few days later on Anjuna walking around in a white suit with a silk scarf around his neck and a walking stick with a silver knob. He really looked like a man of substance but he was still alone. They asked about Lucia but he said she didn’t want to go back with him, the bitch. He didn’t seem too disturbed by this but he was certainly acting a bit funny. The days went by and he was still walking around the beach in his white suit and stick all alone and slowly his behaviour began to become a bit weird. He got really aggressive, screaming at people that just happened to cross his path. Everybody could see that he was going to be in trouble but he wouldn’t accept any help. Soon he spent all his money. The white suit was getting dirty but he was still holding on to his stick. He had just become one of the many guys and girls who were wandering around in a state of total confusion, flipped out. I’ve never liked this word but that’s how they were called. Bad or too much acid, total freedom, no rules, a babel of languages, people who tried to rip you off or take advantage of you at any given chance, that was also how the so called paradise was and for some people this was too much to take. Achille left Goa on his VW beetle and they never heard of him again. Maybe he finally made it back to Italy or maybe not. Like many that I met and whose fate remained uncertain.
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