"I dig your humor! And your calm nature. In fact, although I hardly know you, I think you're super likable!"
How did he react?
He smiled. Then he said, "Thank you!", leaned forward a bit and added in a lower voice, "I don't know you either but I, too, think that you seem super likable!"
How did I feel?
Luca salts my Spanish class. Together with Tommaso he brings pretérito perfecto, tildes and textbook dialogues to life. We wink or make faces across the room, depending on the situation: Sometimes Spanish is a trip to taco dreamland, sometimes it is as compelling as an extended session of memorizing timetables. But it is never shallow, at least not when Lucais attendant. Because he spices things up with his sharp humor and his open laugh. I am sure I would recognize its sound among a hundred others. His jokes are edged, not cruel. Plus he realizes when it is time for a good laugh- and when it's better to bring some focus. Then he'll put his hand up and ask a serious question, or offer advice in his calm voice. In four months I have never heard him raise that voice of his. However one time it went from sunny and relaxed to engaged (but still peaceful): Last week he, our fellow student Cameron, and I had a political discussion- in Spanish! A language we have been learning for three months now. Looking back that performance, without a doubt, was stand up comedy at its finest. Unintentional humor is my favorite- and Luca its master (just like me). Additionally, between racking his brains for the translation of self-reliance and throwing in some German words, Luca proved another skill of his: He is amazingly open to other people's opinions. When he listens his eyes are awake and so is his heart. I know Luca is active in politics- and still he is neither dogmatic nor sarcastic. He just believes in his ideas enough to stand up for them; But never stands on someone else. He always looks around and considers different perspectives. That attitude of his turns talking to him into a treat. As do his jokes: They light up any frown, no matter if its cause is Spanish grammar or societal injustices. I hope those jokes won't stop doing so, even if one day Lucas stands in the parliament, fighting for his opinions, holding on to his goal in life: Making a change. Go Luca!