I have learned to slow down in Tuscany realizing things will eventually get done, but in a more relaxed pace than at home. Timelines can often change and Tuscany is providing me with an education in the art of tranquillita (tranquility) and pazienza (patience), neither of which are my strong suits.
This past summer has been very busy with many property projects underway, started in the Spring and finally coming to completion these past few months.
The only reason for time is so that everything doesn’t happen at once. – Albert Einstein
The olive trees have had their deep sete (thirst) quenched by rain this month, following a blistering six months of “Lucifer’s” grip on the Olive Trees. (see Lucifer’s grip on the Olive Trees, Perfume anyone?)
The olive trees must be asking Mother Nature, ” What have we done to deserve this fate”?
The majority of the olives have fared well although they are not as plentiful and some appear smaller in size.
The brilliant green olives continue to hang joyously from the olive branches, bouncing and swaying in the breeze, like happy children swinging on a set of monkey bars.
Many of the weaker olives fell softly to the ground, finding a final resting place upon the dried earth beneath the trees. They laid bravely awaiting their fate with the birds swallowing them whole in order to avoid the bitter taste of the oleuropein in the skins. Having bitten into a fresh olive (for reasons still unknown to me), I would not recommend this to anyone, you will be left recoiling from the bitterness.
Additional well water was ordered and delivered to the property to ensure the water required for the land irrigation would be sufficient.
The workman toiled in the intense heat of the Tuscan summer while they replaced the worn wood with the tufa stone edging, meticulously ensuring the stones were level and evenly abut each other. We received photos from Francesco who was overseeing the work as we were in Canada at the time. The results are hopefully a life enduring change (my lifetime) which will ensure the cutting of the prato (lawn) is accomplished with more ease, making Sergio’s work simpler. The olives well-being is dependent on Sergio’s well-being. Importante (important).
The aging lights that lined the walkway were replaced by lights that look similar to tall, thin mushrooms, whose illumination casts downward from their caps, thus ensuring the true beauty of a non illuminated Tuscan sky can be experienced. The crickets are deafening at night, while the stars fill the night sky and the wildlife softly speak to each other, so memorable.
The Tuscan fall will soon be upon us with an overflowing cornucopia of Italian festivals to celebrate (festeggiare) the bounty of the season and to share the gifts of the Tuscan land.
The annual collection of fresh fruits and vegetables, the harvesting of the ripe grapes and olives, and the gathering of the robust chestnuts and truffles, signals fall has arrived.
I am looking forward to enjoying the magnificent homemade tagliatelle con tartufo bianco (tagliatelle pasta and white truffle) at Osteria alla Villa, a local Osteria in Villa a Sesta and I will be drizzling truffle oil on top of my freshly home-made castagna zuppa (chestnut soup). I find the process of roasting the fresh chestnuts and making the soup relaxing, I am unsure why, as it is so time-consuming!
Local harvesters have been secured to pick the ripening olives at just the right time this fall and the harvest will be followed quickly by a cold press at the local Frantoio (olive mill).
With the cold press of the olives completed, we will have our glorious, green, piquant liquid gold, a gift of the olive trees and lands of Montecchio. Tuscan magia (magic)!
I thought I would make some fig marmellata (jam) this season while indulging in a well deserved glass or two, of red Chianti wine with our wonderful neighbours and visiting friends. While rounding out the season with a taste of our newly pressed extra virgin olive oil (EVOO). La Dolce Vita (the sweet life).
When I moved into our Casale (country home) I compiled a list of things I wanted to do: purchase a bright painting for that wall or a desk for that corner and so on, but all in good time, for you see, I have a relaxed pace now and a Tuscan perspective.
Do not spoil what you have by desiring what you have not; remember that what you now have was once among the things you only hoped for. - Epicurus
How can I desire anything else, I am living in paradise after all.
** All photographs were taken by my wonderful neighbour Eve Wickwire (Canada) on a recent visit to my Casale in Tuscany. Thank you Eve, for allowing me to share your memories.
BrainyQuotes. (2001-2017). Einstein Quotes (Web Site). Retrieved from: https://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/a/alberteins148878.html
BrainyQuotes. (2001-2017). Epicurus Quotes (Web Site). Retrieved from: https://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/e/epicurus133089.html