February 14, 2014
Will you be my Valentine?
Tanti baci a tutti xxxxxxxxxxxx.
October 14, 2013
Ponies a-prancin’; olives a-dancin’.
That’s how it is this time of year in Sicily.
You can do it by hand.
Or use a big red comb.
Or a motorized gadget, sort of like a fan on a heavy long pole.
Olives bounce everywhere, along with an avalanche of twigs and leaves.
“Could we do this?” I ask the olive pickers, pointing to Diana (whose trees these are) and myself.
They laugh at the idea. “You have to be strong, signora.” They flex their muscles, just in case we don’t get it.
The men wrestle the whole back-breaking mess into the tractor and hurry to the olive press, which is heavy with the scent of hot sun and bitter soil. Total haul: 570 kilos of olives.
Nearly three hours later, after the olives are washed and thrashed and mashed and milled, out gushes the good stuff, a thick ribbon of green velvet.
We sip it from paper cups and taste all of Sicily: it’s like fresh-cut country grass still wet with morning dew, squeezed with sweet lemons and spattered with peppercorns.
March 22, 2013
Do you want to feel oh-so-Italian?
Then go strip your bed and throw those quilts and blankies on a line.
You’ve been hibernating in their depths far too long. (Haven’t you?) Let the stale things inhale the blueish air.
*Ah, Primavera. Here’s Botticelli’s version. And to my southern hemisphere amici, happy (belated) autumn!
December 28, 2012
It’s not even gone, and I’m already nostalgic.
2012 will be abandoned like an old Sicilian house. Cobwebs of memory will trail over bleached walls. Doubts will creep in. Ghosts will whisper. A new generation will carve initials into decaying walls they don’t understand.
Farewell sorbet-pink days. Farewell sunlit skies. Farewell sweet grasses.
Must you push us out so soon, 2012? Can’t we linger in your embrace a little longer?
What awaits us through those dusty green doors?
December 24, 2012
Buon Natale Means Merry Christmas to You
Far Away Across the Sea
They Don’t Know the Time Or Year
Buon Natale, Means Merry Christmas to You