But his fiery energy, this internal power, on his voyage and once he arrived in America? How did he sustain it? Could he?
He and his family lived in Pennsylvania, farming, before ending up in Chicago's Little Italy. Did Salvatore think America would be like pretty, bucolic Santa Caterina except with more riches? Was the reality a jolt? That the streets weren't paved with gold and that he still had to work? Except now he had to do so in a land that viewed him with suspicion? The Natale name eventually became 'Natalie', Cologera became 'Charlotte'. Blend in, fit in, look like everyone else, act like them, too. It's hard to fan your flames and tend your fire when you're so busy melting into the pot.
I don't think it helped that their neighbors in Little Italy were gangsters. The Cosa Nostra was still very much alive and present in his life on the West Side of Chicago. Salvatore and Charlotte (and their growing brood) learned not look at street-crimes, to avert their eyes, keep walking, and pretend not to notice. They wouldn't even leave their apartment if they heard gunfire. How to keep fast to our visions, our desires and decisions amid challenges, fears and anxieties?
There's something so beneficial about tending to our roots, about giving them a little love and attention from time to time. I feel warm and satisfied from my visit, with a genuine interest in Charlotte and Salvatore, as well as gratitude and appreciation.