In December there have been way more parties than throughout the entire year. Guests, dinners, desserts on fire. Candles, decorations, presents, tons of mandarin peels left to dry overnight on messy red tablecloths. Two different versions of Saint Nicholas bringing gifts, office parties, cards with wishes for a good Christmas, a New Year ablaze, a happy life. And all of it is quite awesome, not that I am a great fan of family occasions, but it would be foolish and childish not to recognize what a good life we have, because we absolutely do. Of course too much family too close for too long can be pretty asphyxiating (if you don’t take Valium or the like), but then again what would we do without them. Still, none of these seasonal occasions stands a chance against Continue reading
Plain and rock-hard, no filter, no makeup, in the flat daylight of a Sunday morning at the petting zoo, this is how I look now. Age closer to 38 than anything else, I see the more time goes by the bigger my nose seems to become, and my upper lip thinner. I’m starting to look like my grandmother, who is 98 and still completely alive. Being yourself is not easy, people shrug this sentence off like it were the simplest thing in the world – as if it meant Continue reading
V has never been a very cuddly baby. Ever since he was a newborn he had a very clear opinion about his personal space and body contact in general. He does not like being touched, tickled, he can endure only so many hugs a day and, as parents, we have always been very respectful of this. Unless the reason for us to touch him is a necessity such as changing his diaper, measuring his temperature or removing a gigantic booger from one of his nostrils, we never insist on him accepting our physical contact. We screen him from having to kiss or hug other family members, we react on his cues when he does not want to Continue reading
It’s strange. Whenever I return from any trip lasting longer than a few days, my home shifts. I walk in, tired after being shaken by one plane, two buses and a train, I drag the backpack, cabin trolley and duty free purchases across my threshold and… the ceiling feels somewhat higher. The living room smells different, the plants are a bit wilder, and I find myself being a bit scared of what I’ll see under the toilet’s lid. In the fridge there is a bunch of lemons cuddled in a fluff of absinthe-colored mold. It’s almost as if my home wants to warn me that time passes even when I’m not around and that things can happen in the emptiness. And the time I did not spend in these four walls, these two weeks I’ve been away, I didn’t freeze-frame them, they are gone. I chose to be elsewhere, the loss is mine.
At the beginning of the Seventies my parents bought a villa by the sea on the Italian island of Sardinia. It was one of those low white buildings you see on Mediterranean postcards, with a flat roof which served as a terrace, enclosed in a cocoon of raving bougainvillea. For the entirety of our childhood, every single summer, my mother and the three of us moved to that house from the early days of June till about a week into September. It was a raw paradise of rocks and secret beaches, everything was Continue reading
Can you imagine not seeing your best friend for two and a half years? I can. Actually, I know exactly how it feels (it sucks). But on the other hand, when after such a ridiculously long time, your friend finally comes to visit, the intensity of the joy you feel is *almost* worth the wait. And you forget about it quickly anyway cause you’re too busy catching up, laughing out loud on the balcony till the wee hours of the night. My friend stayed with us 10 days, she met my son for the first time ever, and turned out to be probably the coolest Auntie in his Harem. They climbed chairs together, stole small Continue reading
Now that he started trotting more than walking, on his way to figuring out how to run, accidents happen increasingly often. His eyes go faster than his feet and life is simply too short to waste any time on lifting your soles a bit higher. So after he fell on the same knee for three times in a row and was shocked at the Continue reading