July 15, 2010
A working kitchen has finally emerged from the rubble like a phoenix rising. After two nail-biting years. No longer do I boil up boxed soup on a hot plate, despair, mix paint around with a carrot stick, despair, write on a plaster-encrusted sawhorse lit by a bare bulb. I have a real table, lights, a working stovetop. Not just any stovetop, amici, but a Renzo Piano one. (Renzo Piano is the Italian architect who designed the Pompidou Center, the new wing of the Chicago Art Institute, etc.) The stovetop is a piece of impeccable Italian design, though tricky to light and hard to clean (makes perfect sense as form usually trumps function in Italy).
Flies buzz in tight circles. The Iblean light beats in every morning, shining off the mirror-like floor.
The centerpiece of the kitchen is the cathedral dome out the window, and the soundtrack to my life are the bells, scaring me out of bed at 7am, marking the passing of each quarter hour, ringing for the dead, for weddings, for evening vespers, for morning mass, and for festa—four crazy-making days straight.
I love my Sicilian kitchen, and I’m grateful for each day I spend there. (What are you grateful for? Come on, tell us.)