Starting the countdown.

 

A month and a half left.

A month and a half until I pack my bags once again and fly off into the Tuscan sunset.

I’ve always loved movies that were set in Tuscany. I’ve always been a sucker for the untamed hills, the deep dark forest, the elegant orchards and vineyards, the close-up on a couple of hands picking out the olives and pressing them for that amazingly delicious oil. Oh I could go on forever, Tuscany is an enormous work of art whose artist has left room for our most beautiful stories. It’s like poetry and once I step into that first inch of Tuscan land I feel like I’m a verse, a part of it. It welcomes you. It embraces you, it feeds you and it makes you happy just by looking at it. Oh, I’ve got the “virus”, clearly!

I’m looking at six months in a very beautiful part of Tuscany. I’m looking at six months of great food, fresh olive oil and all the Montalcino and Chianti wine that I could possibly wish for. The Montalcino castle is fifteen minutes away. I was 20 years old when I first got a taste of a dry chardonnay produced by this particular label. I was exhilarated. And from April, I’ll be staying just miles away from the source. How fucking awesome is that?

While I’m waiting to pack up and enter another five hour train ordeal just to get there, I’m browsing through my memory for images of the place. I’ve been there before, about a month ago. I spent two weeks there and it did me more good than a month’s worth of Hawaii. Tuscany heals things, you know. The bohemian air that movies give it – it’s real. People there love all the small things – the glass of wine at lunch, the pasta with the most ravishing tomato sauce, the clementines for desert, the basil leaves and garlic cloves that they throw in the pan, next to the steak. The afternoon walk. The morning coffee. The chit chats with the next door neighbor. The long bike rides through the woods or through the country side. The truffle hunt. The sun bathing session on the side of the pool. The cigarette smoked on top of a hill, while watching the city’s lights flicker gently under an explosion of stars on the night sky. Sheer poetry, man.

So I’ve got about fifty days of constantly looking forward to dive into that Tuscan perfume of life. Everything feels better there. At least for me, lil’ old romantic poetic me. Sure, life sucks, life’s painful and hard and doesn’t like to leave me alone, it keeps coming back to poke or pinch me. But out there, surrounded by those hills, I feel better. If I’m going to fight my way through this life, I’ll rather do it with a big smile on my face and a lot of warmth in my heart. Tuscany provides me with such things, without asking for anything in return.

You’d be amazed at how much history lies there, hidden in the narrow streets. I’m actually trying to envision all the kisses that went on by the Ponte Vecchio in Florence. Or how many “wow”‘s have slipped from people’s open mouths while staring at the city of Siena as it unraveled delicately on the side of an old mountain. Or how many sighs have left people’s chests upon taking that first deep breath of fresh air at the sight of a Tuscan sunset.

I’m telling you, there’s a lot of magic going on down there and I plan to investigate this phenomenon. I have to find out where it all comes from, as I already know where it leads. You see, if you’re an aspiring writer with romance oozing out of your fingertips every time you try to write something, you’ll find true happiness there.

You’ll open the dark green shutters of your kitchen and you’ll drink your coffee while watching the sun rise over the hills and your head will suddenly be invaded by words, phrases, ideas, entire novels if you listen carefully.

So I’ve got fifty something days left. Everything else pretty much sucks in my life right now, but this is going to be one hell of a ride. My horoscope (never read it, my mom sends me quotes) said that 2011 is going to be an amazing year for me. Let’s just wait and see, huh?

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