It’s about that time when I have to get myself ready to go to a whole different kind of place. Instead of me cussing at people trying to squeeze me out at the wrong stop on the number 7 train, I get my car stuck in a pack of sheep on their way to fresher meadows. Instead of 7 million people out of 8 making a phone call for take-out or cooking frozen ready made in the microwave, I compete daily with the head of every dinner table in Mercatale di Cortona at the butcher, the baker, the grocery store the size of a postage stamp, and whenever he drives through–the fruit and vegetable truck. I have to get ready to overcome my fear of wild boar when my car won’t make it up the hill to my bed, and I have to prepare myself for watching the fog float away from the fields of poppies as the sun comes up.
I need to prepare for paper thin prosciutto on soft and sturdy bread with no salt, served with fruity, earthy single grape wine, bowls of strawberries that have been found in the woods, celestial coffee that is over in a minute, tiny grilled lamb chops with nothing more than a spill of olive oil, slowly simmered osso bucco, teeth cracking cookies to dip into sweet sherry and bite sized cream puffs anytime of day.
I have to get ready to be hugged.