where the day meets the night: gioia alleria crepuscolo
It is a cloudy afternoon, silvery sky a certain promise of rain after dark. The window is cracked open, letting in the smell of a storm brewing. Inside is warm, but the breeze has a bite to it, seeping into your bones. The kettle whistles, boiling water for the fragrant tea in the pot. A group of children pass under the window, chatting and laughing. While we wait for the water to boil, I start my story.
I remember the first time I heard about the Gioia Alleria. It was February, a year ago, it had snowed in the middle of quarantine. Despite the efforts of the government giving visitor limit to the each houses, I had went to stay at a friend’s house. He lived outside the city, near a tiny airport, where perhaps ten flights a day take off. At the time, it was completely closed, no planes were in sight. During the eerily quiet evenings, we’d go to a nearby forest. When it snowed, we mostly stayed inside, except for going to the forest to play a little in the snow. It was the first time he had ever seen snow. In one of those days, I was scrolling through the internet and came across the Gioia Alleria Mare Chiaro, where swirls of blue were so dark that you could only see them when the light hit it right. It looked like sea at night. The material was incredibly beautiful and the craftsmanship looked flawless. I held off buying it at the time, there was an extra waiting time for deliveries due to snow and pandemic. I doubted it would arrive in one piece.
Months passed and Gioia released new colours for the Alleria. I was still thinking about the Mare Chiaro, but then saw the Crepuscolo. Inspired by the twilight in the bay of Naples, over the sea. How could I resist?
I could not.
Swirls and the shine of the barrel is reminiscent of the sunset more than the sunrise for me. I have rarely seen the sun rise over the sea, but seen it set plenty of times.
During my days of rebellious adolescence, I’d meet up with a friend to go to the seaside. We’d take a short walk, get some coffee, and then sit on the large concrete blocks that separated the sea from the park. I doubt we ever drank all of the coffee that we got, it was mostly to hold and sip something warm while we chatted. It would go cold before we ever saw the bottom of the cup, and then it would become an ashtray to drown the cigarette stubs. We’d talk about life, love, death and poetry. The sun would usually set while we were talking, wasting away hours. The sky would first turn a beautiful shade of orange; reflecting onto the murky, depthless sea. Then the sun itself would turn red, only a slight curve above the waves. Everything would be covered with a tint of purple. At last, in a few precious moments, the sun would dip into the sea, lost deep under.
This was our cue to leave. Once the blue hour set in, we’d walk up the hill to our homes. We spent countless afternoons, evenings there. Just watching the sun set and talk. In spring or summer, the days would be long and the sunlight seemed to stay forever. Sometimes we’d forget about the time and one of our parents would call us back home for dinner. I don’t think we ever went, we’d still stay and watch the sun set with bright red cheeks and too cold coffee in our hands. Music would play, albums repeating over and over. This pen reminds me of those moments, of a dear friend. She’s oceans away now. Swirls of the pen like those sunsets over the sea, the gold rings on the body like the rings we used to wear. We wore so many rings. Ink flowing freely from the nib like the secrets from our lips, moments that passed, the whispers lost to the wind.
Countless moments, lost to the sea.
This pen is magnificent. It is a lot of pen, and good pen, for such a price. Piston mechanism is still extremely smooth after months of semi-heavy use and my EF nib worked perfectly out of the box. I like swirly, shiny, colourful pens and this one checks all the right boxes for me. Even the barrel engraving is very clean and nicely done. Once I lent it to someone to try it out -since it is such a large pen, I thought they might be comfortable with it- but they didn’t realise the cap was threaded and forced to snap it. That broke a part of the threads, but the cap still seals perfectly and doesn’t have any hard starts. I enjoy using this pen so much, and the memories the colour brings is a bonus.
Thank you for reading! I hope you enjoyed reading about this pen as much as I enjoyed writing it.