21 May 2013

European Vacation Eight - The Failure of Words

This day. This wonderful amazing day. This day will be gone soon. Vanished. Living only in my memory and in the photos we took and our shared oral history. Days do that. Just as seconds minutes and hours leave forever. This was a day I would have held on to. There were moments that wanted to be kept. Stored in pocket or backpack to be pulled out later. There were views that defy description as we took the ferry from Le Spezia to Porto Venere. It was perfect weather. Blue skies above and vast white continents of clouds in the distance. The temperature was mild we never felt heat nor cold. The air was like a soothing balm. The ferry ride was smooth and relaxing except for all the oohs and aahs it illicited as we enjoyed the views. Islands. Mountains. Castles and churches of medieval origin jutting from the rocks reaching proudly to the vast skies above. A sleepy village with rustic narrow streets and shops and clothes drying in windows and wonderful people smiling.

Porto Venere dates back to Roman times which is to say over 2,000 years ago. I live in a city back home that is all of 150 years of age. We visited the church and the fort that overlooked the sea. Built in the 12th century. We walked on rugged stone steps. Stopped and marveled at how each new view surpassed the last. Wondered why we didn't couldn't live here. Could one ever tire of such sights?
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I could not be a food critic. The eating part I'd be fine with but the other business about describing it....It would just be a serious of adjectives. I don't know how to tell you about the magnificent food we've had thus far in our two days in Italy. Every morsel has been a delight. Panna cotta that I could bath in. Gelato that I could smother myself with. Fish -- and you see here comes a cliche -- baked to perfection as are the potatoes. Pizza that puts to shame what the best places in the Bay Area create. And the salads. My god. A simple slice of tomato is heavenly.

I worry sometimes about enjoying myself so much. I worry that the scales will eventually balance with suffering of some sort. But then I think that's nonsense that there are no such rules governing our lives. And goodness knows I've endured pain enough. But most of all I tell myself to enjoy now. Savor it. It will be gone. Like life itself we embrace it while we can. I can today. For however long it lasts. There is still tonight's dinner to come.....


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