The visiting journalists in Latvia ask me who is the most influential person in the country. Without much hesitation I answered them: "Roberto Meloni".
"Who is she?" They say. "Ambassador of the European Union? Political Advisor? Artist?"
"All called and more," I answer. "He is also a TV chef, Dina Marsin's songwriter, and was once a pirate captain."
During this time, journalists usually remember that they delay an important meeting and leave me alone. But that's just half the joke. Roberto Meloni is a real intercultural phenomenon, like a freelance-versatile artist, and he's really impressive.
Latvian Radio etherea returns the title "Latvian Colors", which the audience loved and received warmly a year ago – five new stories of colorful phenomena in Latvia in the eyes of an alien. Translation: Lauris Veips.
Roberto has twice represented in Latvia at Eurovision 2007. A year with a group who tried to win the band at the expense of Il Divo and in 2008 together with a group who tried to make money at the expense of fishing "Caribbean" fishing. He again appeared in 2009, reading the results of the Latvian jury.
He also has the opportunity to dance and often perform as a jury. He can also swim with talk and radio programs or promote the latest Latvian tour on TV. I have spoken with people who have hired Robert's director of public events, and they have a very good assessment of his professionalism.
But her true influence is on the TV show cooking show "La Dolce Vita … Roberto!" (And its identical predecessor "Good food for good lovers … Roberto!") Sent on a noon day.
I assure you that my wife will give me, after a few days, everything she is preparing for. He sits on the television set with a pen and a sheet of paper by writing Robert's recipes and I am sure that he is not the only one who does it.
In all likelihood, hundreds, perhaps even thousands of women, across Latvia, have signed all the suggestions they use for salt and pepper, with a fanatical intensity that could be expected of generals alongside Kim Chenun on rocket grounds.
I think he is preparing for his favorite soup in Latvia for about 60 years. It's good. But this week, there was a steaming cloth on the table, the contents of which tasted slightly differently.
"Very delicious," I said.
"Yes, it's Robert's soup!" He said passionately. "He did it on Monday."
It was almost the same soup that he usually did, but there were also tomatoes. This technology is Robert's favorite. So add tomatoes. He is Italian.
Robert's attractiveness is not just about adding tomatoes. His attractiveness is due to the fact that he is a bit exotic and at the same time understands the Latvian language he speaks with a unique, very enjoyable and exaggerated Italian accent.
I admire Roberto, not just because of her language skills. I like versatile people and he is by no means the same. His brightest and most beloved memory is the museum's night a few years ago. I walked a few places and thought of going home when I dropped to Riga Castle at midnight and walked down the stairs to the cold basement. At that time, it was not too good, but complete Greek and Roman sculptural replicas. And just among the pillars, blacks and the victorious heroes was Roberto Meloni – sparkler illuminated, a brilliant dressed butterfly suit, he sang "Volare" in full swing and record.
On the other hand it was about to run out, but this moment seemed to me a curious touch. How many entertainers would be ready to stand in the middle of the night in a cellar planted by a smile smiling in the crowd that was accidentally injured? Perhaps Robert is not a Latvian, but he is definitely a Latvian colourist. What a man!
The series "Latvian Colors" is created by Mike Coler and Lauris Veips, the authors of the Latvian public media portal.