Everyday inspirations:midsummer fireworks

Since I was a child, in my hometown ,the main event of the summer are the fireworks made on the 15th of August.
I remember my mom bringing me to beach to watch them and, some times, we also had a midnight swim after the show.

At the time fireworks were something absolutely amazing; an act of magic!

Gradually ,over time,they lost their power to fascinate: they went from being a fascinating magical event to be boring or, worst ,to be too popular for a society busy to elevate itself .
A society entrapped in its own snobbery.

This year ,for the first time in a long time,we are still here on holidays on the day of the fireworks and we decided to go and watch them .
Most of our old friends are just too busy for joining in but ,also ,couldn’t care less.
“Fireworks are for tourists who doesn’t know better and don’t mind the crowd on the beach………”, they say .
Fireworks are nothing special anymore!
Except for us tacky tourist of course! So off we go.

We leave the house around 9.30(fireworks are supposed to start around 10.30)
so that we can have a stroll on the beach before.

All along the beach there is a promenade overlooked by hotels and apartments block.
The scene we are presented with is completely unexpected.
Every hotel terrace has musical bands and the guests are busy dancing and laughing .
Most of the apartment are empty as the inhabitants are all outside:
they joint the dinner tables all together and are outside drinking and eating,celebrating and waiting together for the show to start.

For one night ” the Bon Ton” is forgotten,there is no expensive sandals but only bare foots; elegant restaurants are replaced by plastic garden tables; posh buffets and exotic cocktails left their place to BBQs and local wine.

The atmosphere is amazing.
There is a contagious feeling of lightheartedness.
It is like to go back in time and I am glad my girls could experience all this.

Every kids should grow thinking “fireworks” are an act of magic .
Every adults should never forget ” fireworks” are the touch of magic in our lives.

Real Friends don’t judge

I have been thinking about friendship a lot recently.
I met a lot of new people and I am not sure how to categorise them: acquaintances or friends?
Sometimes the line dividing the two categories is clear but some other times is not and,unfortunately, more then once I abused of the word “friend” and I got hurt.

Lately I found myself very close to someone and I am incline to call her a friend but, as time passes, I am starting to question the foundation of our “friendship”.
I like her and enjoy the time we spend together but I feel there is something missing and I feel I can’t let go myself as I would like to do with a so called friend.

I was talking to my cousin and I was telling her about some of my new “friends” when I realised that, very often, i link “friendship” to ” availability “.
On a superficial valuation this surely makes sense and looks right: in fact, what are friends for if not to be there when needed ?
Well ,indeed, real friends are always there when you need them but this is just a consequence of the friendship ‘s nature not its foundation.

The absence of judgement is ,instead, the foundation of true friendship:
That friendship that makes you always comfortable to be yourself ;
That friendship were you don’t compete and don’t compare with one an other;
That friendship that is at tracts nearly naive , because we are like kids that look at everything without malice .
That friendship where spontaneity in what we say ,do and feel leads the way.

Everyday inspirations: A letter to my old house

I am still on holidays .
It is early morning and I am on the balcony writing and checking emails,when I start thinking about my old house.

I didn’t think about it for a long time, in fact, I always being that type of person who ,once she takes a decision, doesn’t look back.
Past is past. I am quite good on drawing lines …….
(to speak the truth ,it is also a very good cope mechanism that keep my mental health steady ,but this is an other story.)

The thought of the house comes with a feeling of having left something unfinished.
I moved,I never looked back,I never gave an explanation.
In one sentence:I betrayed my house. My home of many years was discarded with no mercy.

I then decided to write a letter: A letter to my old house.

“Dear old house,
4 years passed since we moved and only now I realised how unfair I have been with you.
Once you were not serving the purpose anymore, we traded you with a new one,a bigger one,a closer one to where we needed to be.
The move didn’t go as smoothly and fast as I hoped so i became impatient to leave,unhappy to stay.
You had nothing to offer anymore and ,may be ,it was true ,but didn’t give me right to forget everything you gave already.
It was not an excuse for being ungrateful .
I forgot the emotions you gave us the first night we slept there,10 years previously ,with no furnitures but as happy as ever. Toasting with champagne sitting on the kitchen floor.
I forgot the feeling when we brought home ,to you ,our first child.

I was so busy organising the move and so excited to move that I never stopped a minute thinking about how you helped building my family,my life .
My family was born inside your walls.
My life, as I know it now, started inside your walls.

I can smell the odours linked to every single memory you witnessed.
I feel a sudden pain in my stomach ,I mistreated you so badly, I need to do something.
I need to make amend.
I need to apologise. I own you that ,because I left and never thank you for all the happiness you gave me and my family.

Dear old house, you were our first home,the place were everything started,and no other house(no matter how bigger or newer) will never be able to replace you in my heart .You will always have a special place in my memories,in our memories.

Hope you will find the way to forgive me,
With love
Your old owner.”

One day inspirations: the daily quote

“Smile in the mirror. Do that every morning and you’ll start to see a big difference in your life.”
Yoko Ono.

A long time ago my dear friend Abigail asked me why I was never smiling in the pictures.
At first I didn’t understand what she meant because I was actually smiling ,so she said :”you need to show your teeth to really smile”!
I told her that I never did because of my “vampire tooth “,(so called by my daughters).
Basically my left canine is quite pronounced,a kind of family signature,and I have always been very aware of it.
Honestly it can be very anti aesthetic.

So once I gave her my explanation she looked at me and just spat on my face hat it was all bullshitt (can I say that?.?..): I had a beautiful contagious smile and must show it.

This was the start of long series of pictures where I smile and I laugh,open mouth.
Since then I always smile and laugh showing my teeth and my pictures are much better.I might not be the most photogenic subject but I look happy and that makes me feel happy.

It is funny how laughing and smiling is now one of the most characteristic tracts of my personality.
I became more extroverted and all started from an imposed smile…….that slowly grew inside me!!!

This is why when I saw the above quote from Yoko Ono,I thought :”that is damned true!!! And worth a try…”…….and so I did.
Well, first few days ,you feel a bit dull and it is not really the most natural thing to do first thing in the morning ,but as days pass ,that smile that is reflected back to you is comforting and starts talking to you.
It is a smile that gives you peace.
A smile that becomes a state of mind.
A smile that reminds you every morning how lucky you are.
A smile that reminds you every morning that there is always a reason to smile in your life,no matter what.
A smile that ,even in the worst days, will tell you ,you can make it through.You are strong enough .

Thank you Abigail and Yoko Ono.

Everyday inspirations: a space and a time to write

I am not sure I really have writing habits,yet.
All day long I take mentally notes about what I feel and what I do but only in the morning I sit down at the desk in our home office and write.
A nice hot cup of coffee to keep me going and my dogs snoring at my feet to keep me company.
I like this little room ,it’s cosy and warm .It s a room to work,to produce.
Sometimes ,unfortunately,the time during the day is very tight so I write in the evening ,in bed.This is a setting that I particularly enjoy because it brings me totally out of reality.
My bedroom has always been my space,the only room in the house to be only mine ,(and my husband of course).No kids allowed.
Despite the fact I am tired, I noticed that when I start writing in the evening I completely loose track of time and sometime I keep going until my eyes shut defeated by tiredness .

Just an evening thought

The girls had their dinner early tonight so myself and my husband had ours late on the balcony ,eventually enjoying some fresh air after days of torrid weather.
We finished now and he went inside to watch some television.
I am still here browsing around on my iPad.
No! actually, I am checking my blog ,still disappointed by its low success rate,but then I say to myself that it's only early days,plus I admit it myself my writing skills are a bit rusty and so is my capacity of open up.
But I am happy I started it, I am happy I am writing again.
It might not be that much interesting to others but this blog is good to me. I need to keep it up.
I need to keep it running ,because when it is all there ,written down ,everything seems better ,easier : my brain is busy,my mind is distracted ,my soul is at peace.

A non ordinary day at the beach

It started like an ordinary day at the beach.

Kids happily making sand castles or having fun in the sea ,diving into the waves.Mothers busy chasing the little ones to top up their suncream .Dads checking their phones for the latest news or reading under the parasols.Young couple holding their hands while sunbathing ,totally careless of the heat, too in love to care about their body sweaty and sticky.Groups of elderly,with their white hats to protect them from the sun,playing cards and pretending to get upset when loosing a game.

I am lying down ,my head under the shadow ,only my legs exposed to the sun, shining in the sky like a ball of fire.I fell asleep while reading but suddenly I am brought back to awareness by my daughters giggling and pulling my arm as I was allegedly snoring.Embarrassed I quickly sit straight and look around, to check who could have heard me but everybody seems too busy with their phones,books,naps…..to care about my snoring: "pew" but also "who cares.."……I am on holidays.

It is now nearly 5 o' clock,time for an other swim when we hear a thunder barking in from far away and then an other one and an other one.

By instinct I lift my head up ,to the sky.We see black clouds travel at high speed.

The sun is covered,the light is gone.It is suddenly night time.The marine breeze is now heavy wind.

The whole beach is set in motion :everybody starts packing their belongings ready to go home before the rain comes .

A scream, from a non identified directions and everybody freeze.At first I don't understand what is going on but then I turned around and I see: A cone made of wind and water is rising in the middle of the sea.

My daughters are petrified by what they are seeing.To them,tornados exist only in the books.They hug myself and their father not sure what they should do:fascination and fear is what I see in their eyes,in their expressions.

I want to leave but at the same time I want to see what's next.It is the first time I see something like that so closely .

At the horizon there is nothing to separate the see and sky but this monster made threatening coming toward us.

I know I have to start moving,packing and go home but I am paralysed .i can't move and I can't stop watching.The life guards are securing the beach and forcing everyone to leave.

We are home.Showered and changed on the balcony looking at the sky turning back to his light blue colour .

The rain stopped,the tree are naked after being shacked so vigorously.The roads are white covered in ice stones that are melting already.

The storm has passed,everything is back to normal :ready for an other ordinary day at the beach.  

Everyday inspirations:”I can’t go back to yesterday because I was a different person then.” – Lewis Carroll

Despite the fact that “Alice in Wonderland ” has never been one of my favourite story when I was a child, I love the above quote.
It is a short sentence that perfectly summarise the solution to most of human ‘s torments.
Just think about how much time we spend, (or should I say “we waste”)thinking about our past.
How many times do we wish we had taken different decisions?made different choices?done things differently?
Unfortunately all this is of pointless.
We can analyse our past as much as we can but it won’t make a difference to our present or to our future .
What is done is done,knowing why is of no use; only thing we can do ,is cope with that,face the consequences,trying to see a positive side.
We shape ourself through our experiences: what we were yesterday is not what we are today ;what we are today is not what we will be tomorrow.
Whatever choice we make must be contextualised in that very same moment we make it.
Regretting the past is an enormous waste of time because the person regretting the past is not the same person who made that past.
We can’t go back in time, we can’t justify the present with the past,we can’t change the present through the past.
Whatever decision we made in the past was justify by events and states of mind that for sure are very different from the current ones.
Stop living in the past.
Stop filling our heads with” what if……” or ” if only…..”
Past is the key to nothing.
Live the present!!!

A midsummer day dream

After being in Florence all morning and desperate to find some relief from the heat and the crowd that was overflowing streets and monuments,we drove up to a little village sitting on the hills overlooking Florence:Fiesole
The view from up there was amazing and the breeze a gift from the sky .
We went to the Egyptian and Roman museum and to see the rests of the roman theatre.
My husband and daughters went to see the gardens while I waited sitting on those steps that once were the seats from where the crowd cherished the gladiators or enjoyed the performances of the most famous actors playing Gods and Goddesses orchestrating the lives of the mortals.
I don't know how long I was there but long enough for me to let that magic place bring me back in the past and there I was,back in the time when the Roman Empire was still ruling half of the known world.
There I was ,on the stage ,playing in a Greek tragedy .
My face framed by purple red curls.
My body wrapped in a white tunic .
My arms adorned with gold bangles shaped like snake with emeralds as eyes .
I am acting and I am dancing and singing and the spectators are enchanted by my performance.
Their mouths slightly open in disbelief waiting to know what is gonna happen next:will Proserpina,the Goddess of hell ,kidnapped by Plutone,King of Ade ,free herself?
Yes, Giove will free her and the voices of other tourists will free me,bringing me back to present.
I get up and start climbing the stairs to leave but not before turning and giving last look at the stage, last wave at the public, last bow.

Every day inspirations: Home

It's funny how when I think about home I think about my home;the home where I live with my own family ,but if I think at the smell of home I think at the smell of old freshly varnished wood of the house where I grew up: I think about my parents ' house .
The very same house I called home for a long time even after I moved out and even after moving abroad.
For few good years, in fact, I used to say :I'm going back home", when visiting my country of origin.
Now I don't go home anymore,I go to my parents' house, visiting or holidaying and then I come back home.
You are probably thinking ,"fair enough", "this is absolutely normal", and it is !but pay attention at the words: my "home"; their " house", and this is probably not fair enough. Isn't other people entitled to have a home? It might not be home for me anymore ,but sure it is for my parents.
It is just me, unconsciously calling other people home "house" or is it a common thing to do in order to make our own home unique?
Most probably , it is something we do , being completely oblivious to the hidden meaning.
If we are lucky enough to call a place " home ",in fact, we don't need to make it unique because it is already the most special place in the world!!!