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I saw a bright ray was especially shining under him as I caught him showing up in the balcony of the Sydney FC’s training camp amid the cloudy Friday morning on November 29th, 2013. I was left astonished, my eyes kept savoring the super fast moment, even my heart stopped rattling to have eventually met the one and only Alessandro Del Piero. I wasn’t prepared to have firstly seen him in that very accidental kind of way, in that very unanticipated moment yet I was able to have captured, felt the most precious moment that lasted only for a few seconds. Sometimes in your life there were experiences that came up so suddenly, lasted so quickly but it took all your breathe away. Such sayings are way too much but all in all, the first experience of meeting Alessandro was just like that; unpredictably, surprisingly, greatly, incredibly, unforgettably. I was like; “Hah! Was that Alessandro Del Piero?!”

He walked very fast when I and his another fan were following him going to a training field where he and his teammates were doing light trainings. He looked at me but did not say any words. Alessandro seemed ignorant to the words said by the male fan I just met in the training ground. At first I thought Alessandro was cold and unfriendly.

Such thoughts quickly ran away from my mind once I realized his teammates had been training for quite some minutes before his arrival. May be Alessandro was detained by some affairs that caused him to come a bit late in the training field.

One by one, me and the male fan were joined with dozens of his lovers; boys, adults, girls, old men. We came around to see him only. And Alessandro remained focused on his exercises. He looked serious listening to his coach instructions. Sometimes, he did his own training method. Once in a while, he laughed but this rarely happened. Again, the thought that he was a bit arrogant came up as he wasn’t seen to have a look at us. As many as the negative thoughts came up I immediately washed them away. I instead enjoyed the very speechless minutes by gazing at his movements, smiling all the way, saying gratitudes in my heart, reinstating myself that this was not a dream. Too many dreams have come into realizations and I lost for words to describe them all at the moment and until now. I didn’t capture many pictures or recorded the moment in a camera. I simply deeply felt it, memorized it in my eyes, heart, head and mind. I placed the very much-anticipated moment to the deepest part of my soul. Let it be savely put in my memory forever and ever.

As the training session was over he quietly walked towards us. He did not greet us but he approached us. I didn’t dare to ask for pictures or get my jersey signed. I was too afraid. It was until one of the awaiting fans asked for a photograph that I encouraged myself to ask for the help from an oldman bringing an umbrella to take a picture with me and Alessandro. How surprising to have known that Alessandro knew I was giving my camera and was waiting for the moment to get the picture taken, for suddenly, he stopped having his pictures taken with another fan, took a few steps to where I was standing, directing his face to my camera without me having to ask… then ‘click’.. a picture that rewarded my whole 13-year old wait, patience, tiredness, anxiety, money, and all… I was overjoyed that although he seemed ignorant but in fact he did know my presence and gave what I wanted without me having to beg him to do so. For me, he is the kind of boyfriend who proves his attention with actions not words.

The only words that came out from my mouth were ‘thank you’ but he did not reply. Never mind, though. I wanted to dance all around after that but I managed to have kept my manner properly. Alessandro then was busy signing jerseys, books, while I took his pictures. I kept saying ‘thank yous’ all the time that he eventually replied them with ‘you’re welcome’. He even winked at me. How sweet!

The picture was enough. I did not dare to get my jersey signed. But looking at the other fans’ who got not only once but two of Alessandro’s signs, I braved myself to give my pen and asked for him to sign the jersey I was wearing at that time. He declined the pen and I was a bit offended. But that was for fun. I thought he knew the pen might not work well on the jersey as I bet he had signed too many jerseys prior to this moment. Done and done! The picture, the reply, the winked eyes and the signed jersey. These were abundant! This experience teaches me that when it’s meant to be then it’s meant to be; when the moment belongs to me then I’ll have it no matter how long I must wait, no matter how difficult the path that should be taken.

He did not smile a lot but he made sure each fan got what they wanted. After he finished with our moment, the fans moment, he asked who owned the pen. LOL. The funny moment that somehow showed how closed we were with the world champion. The brief part that told me how ordinary he could be. As the owner of the pen got his item, Alessandro left us. I repeatedly warned myself not to mourn over the sweetest ending of my long trip, not to be ungrateful, not to ask for more because I was given more than I had expected, not to get mellow as we parted since I may meet him again some other time.

A year has passed. All the memory remains refresh in my mind. He is now in India. I’d really love to meet him again and again. When the time is for us to meet again, I’ll bring my future everlasting pal. I hope he is so fond of him, too. And I wish I’ll have another picture taken with Alessandro again, this time around Ale will be in the middle of me and my beloved friend, amiiin…

*How relieved, again, to have completed this post for the memory about the meeting with Alessandro Del Piero was weighing my whole week, this whole day when today was exactly the day I met him. Alhamdulillahirobbil’alamin.. thank you Alloh swt…*

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