In March of 1969, she was seventeen and he twenty years old, when they met at a poetry read in a
city in Macedonia, then part of a country known as the jewel of the Balkans.
He was more of a poet than she was, always brooding and sad even when he was happy. She was a
bubbly tomboy who liked his attention and was tickled by the nickname he gave her, Paola.
Salvatore Adamo’s Paola Dolce Paola played on every radio station in Europe and the thought that
he could compare her to the real princess amused her. He claimed his Paola was just as pretty
and as personable as the real Paola Margherita Giuseppina Maria Antonia Consiglia. They had
three days together and he left the festival convinced that the other half of his heart was now
filled. She was molded by the sun, he said, and she was the one.
That August, they would miss each other, at yet another poetry festival, in the world famous
city of Struga, in Macedonia. She arrives two hours after he leaves to go back to his native
Montenegro. Shortly after, Paola leaves for the US, erasing the memory of him. For the next
fifty years, as if to punish himself for his early departure, he would revisit often her last
letter in which she cries out, ‘Where are you?’ The cry has now become his quest, as he searched
to find her, and does, in 2019. The brooding young man is now a melancholy seventy years old,
and the tomboy, a strong-willed and independent woman living on her own in New York City. Will
they recapture the sunrays of their youth? We only know half the ending, as it is much too late
for the land. But maybe not for the distant rays of the magic hour to shine upon the two of them