Restoring a Damp House in Sicily, Part 12

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.)


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15 comments to Restoring a Damp House in Sicily, Part 12

  • aida

    Well, I will tell you what i am thankful for! a friend from Atlanta who dragged me from one end of Sicily to the other. and now that i am home, I think about Sicily every day,And my good fortune to have been there.. it’s smell, the people, the way the pulse of each city is different…. From morning Cafe to the arancini for a snack and wonderful fresh grilled foods to Gelato…The love put into details of the carving and style of every little church…From Palermo’s energy to the coast of Cefalu and Ragusa Ibla and so much more to name….and the sweet couple from the states returning home to their City to sell their hillside apt because he has cancer, they showed us around they shared their time precious time with us. It was hard to say good bye..I am thankful for all these things…Traveling is about memories and the emotion that wells up when you realize that you have been touch its earth and drank the wine and felt the sun..It changes you forever…Life is too short to live in a fish bowl…

  • Nur

    Love your kitchen Jann,it’s just fantastic,I can imagine how pleasure t cook and eat there.Wish you happy time cooking delicious food full of guests.Love

  • i am thankful for the little things i experience, i.e. hearing a bird sing when my mind is too busy with thought.
    i am thankful for my Italian grandparents who raised me with well water, home gardened food and the most fragrant roses in the

  • Sembra che tutto a posto finalmente! things are finally coming together! I am grateful for all my Italian friends and new ones I have met along the way through my blogging (friends like you!) I am also feeling very fortunate to be hosting a 17 year old girl from Puglia in my home in California for an entire year! Siamo tutti noi molto fortunati in modi diversi!!!

    • Jann

      Ciao Melissa–that’s going to be such a greatl experience for your and your new Pugliese “daughter!” BRAVA, I say to you, COMPLIMENTI!

  • catherine Billups


  • Fantastic kitchen! Just looking at the photo makes you want to spend time in that kitchen, sipping un caffe, cooking pasta, having a glass of vino rosso with friends……. I am grateful for the opportunity to spend time in this beautiful country of Sicilia and enjoy all it has to offer.

  • Emalene Renna

    Love the kitchen. I am grateful for walking on a beautiful beach with my granddaughter.

  • Beautiful kitchen! I love the sink and stove and your color choices. I am grateful for my time here in Sicily, and for having the ability to travel and see the world.

    • Jann

      Ah, yes, I’ll second you on being grateful for the ability to travel the world, Heather, and how about having a camera?!!!

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