“The Penniless Pensioner : Misaligned, Maligned but Marvellous”: Chapter 40: Thank God for LSD and Pasta alla Nerano!

After my Ritz-Carlton meltdown in Manhattan for months I had no idea where I was nor did I really care. Was it post traumatic stress disorder or depression?

I was told that I had been taken on a chartered jet courtesy of Don Lupara to Naples where I was transported along the coast to a sanitorium in the beautiful village of Positano. Apparently the standard treatments were not working as I was not communicating and just rocking back and forth mumbling “GINERVA” and then I would sob for hours. I ate very little and shriveled away to dangerous body measurement.

I started to recognize myself again after eating a big bowl of Spaghetti alla Nerano. This pesto/zucchini/cheese pasta was Ginevra’s favourite and it must have jolted my memory. It was weeks later that improvements were noted. Food as medicine for the mind?

Speaking of the mind I was experiencing terrible flashbacks about John Lennon, Ginevra and the execution of those two teenagers Guido and Lino. I had made a breakthrough sparked by that bowl of pasta but had hit roadblock.

Don Lupara I learnt later had authorized an experimental treatment for extreme depression Dr. Muzzio O’Leary had pioneered in the Bolzano Psychiatric Institute. The treatment was called “fear and loathing protocol” which Dr. O’Leary had used with several Las Vegas showgirls. With the use of LSD the trauma causing the mental illness was relived in an exploratory and guided manner to have the mind explain to itself the continuing trauma was nothing but a reaction to an awful reality but no longer a debilitating reality. Medical gobbly gook but it worked extremely well in my case. Unfortunately one side effect was a craving for pesto so I ate huge quantities of pasta which. Considering my skeletal frame wasn’t all that bad.

I was housed in an exclusive asylum up in the Positano Hills with a breathtaking view of the ocean below. 14 months after my meltdown it was me I was finally dealing with. Don Lupara had popped in for a few visits and the Fat Fox had red eyes, a mottled complexion and was yellow skinned. He looked atrocious. A haggard caricature of his former self. One day he showed up for a talk with me about my future. He had a final cure in mind.

Published by Robert K Stephen (CSW)

Robert K Stephen writes about food ,drink, travel, film, and lifestyle issues. He also has published serialized novels "Life at Megacorp", "Virus # 26, "Reggie the Egyptian Rescue Dog" and "The Penniless Pensioner" Robert was the first associate member of the Wine Writers’ Circle of Canada. He also holds a Mindfulness Certification from the University of Leiden and the University of Toronto. Be it Spanish cured meat, dried fruit, BBQ, or recycled bamboo place mats, Robert endeavours to escape the mundane, which is why he has established this publication. His motto is, "Have Story, Will Write."

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