An intersection of roads. Some of them seemed to be real bypasses: large, paved and imposing; others were narrow and curvy alleys with small curves and big holes; others showed nice tufts of grass and some colorful flowers among the stones. This image describes only one side of the crossroads: if I had to tell you about the infinite number of streets which come from the west, I would not have the time to tell you my little story. All these paths led to a giant crossroads. It was impossible to understand who had the right of way, how one should cross it, who should stop, who was to blame for taking off again and turn and who, instead, should have slowed down. At the center of what we could call an intersection, or a crossroads – I do not even know how to describe it – one could find a traffic policeman. Since nobody had never seen something like this, not even in the biggest cities in the world, it was necessary to ask him. How could I move closer to the only one person who would be able to explain me the situation in this confusion? After some ups and downs, like running, stopping, and walking again, I finally reached the policeman.
-Do you see what you have done? He immediately scolded me, without even looking me in the face.
-I really do not understand…-
-Ah, so you do not understand. Look at what you have reduced Nostalgia to! She is already struggling a lot for accelerating since she is still anchored to that sort of scooter which is Melancholy. If you cut her off, she will never start up again! And then…wait a second. Anger, can’t you see that it is red? It is red for everyone, including you. Do not tell me that you have not seen it, because I do not believe you.
-Sorry for asking, but it seems to me that it is red for everyone, isn’t it?
-No, turn towards North. Do you see who is coming from that big road? Her name is Perseverance. She can pass, she has her tale-toll. She has earned it. Come on, I say come on Shyness! The traffic light is turning yellow, go now that it is still green! So, pass, come on. Here is another one, Education. These days she always hesitates on driving: she takes the wrong direction, she staggers. And there she is, that snotty kid. Sorry again. Suddenly, he pulled out his whistle and started to let out all the air he had in his lungs. – This time I will get you a ticket, I do not care. It is not possible that you sneak out in this way only because your name is Envy. Can’t you see that it was a one-way street? But you do not care about the rules and you were about to have an accident with Happiness, as it almost always happens!
-Excuse me, policeman, who is that car with the four arrows?
-It is Love. I am the one who took him off the oil. I could not stand him anymore. He was used to wander around with his friends, called “fallings in love”, and he caused a lot of damage on this crossroads. When Love was around, everyone started to behave abnormally. Even Rage, who is normally self-confident, did not understand anything anymore. The only one who was able to dominate Love was Jealousy. If you have noticed it, she is always in the second row to bother him. Please, circulate. It is Virtue’s turn. So please, circulate. Determination, here is another one. Fun! Entertainment, put your seat belt on and do not dare to take the road only to follow Madness! Don’t you dare right now! Here comes the other traffic policeman. My enemy par excellence. You will see, you will see what a mess. Goodbye, Miss.
Thus, he went away in a composed manner after a surprising kiss on the hand. And here is the new policeman who hugs me, crushes me and he is particularly moved to have visitors.
-Well, well, let’s start. The green light goes off, for everyone.
Suddenly, I hear a deafening noise, a continuous movement of emotions which come and go, do an about-face and move around. I immediately demanded an explanation for this new way of directing traffic, but I realized that the policeman was no longer there. I turned around and saw him there, next to Friendship, Affection, Pain, Charisma and Faith who were trying to relieve Love and distance Jealousy which instead did not want to move. When he came back, he was sorrowful.
-No way, he is stronger than me. When I am around, Jealousy does not listen to anything.
-Sorry, but why? Shouldn’t all obey you?
-No, my dear. Everyone obeys only Mind.
-Yes, the traffic policeman from before. Everyone obeys Mind’s orders! You know, my name is Heart and times are hard for those who let themselves be guided by me.