Thursday, March 3, 2011

dolce e salata

Marlena de Blasi is another author, which I have not heard before until I read her book, Dolce e Salata, which literally means Sweet and Salty. This memoir is about the transitional period in her life, about the move she made from Venice to a village in Tuscany. This book is a sequel to her book, Thousand Days in Venice, where she describes her journey in meeting the love of her live, Fernando, in Venice. I probably should have read that one before Dolce e Salata.

Dolce e Salata is a book about her day-to-day life in this Tuscan village, about the new friends she made, about her new relationship with Fernando, about the food she ate in her local eatery, about the food she cooked in her new oven, basically about Tuscan life. Some part are quite sweet, and some are quite savoury, but for the most part, it was a bit bland. There's no up and down to the story, just a leisurely pace from beginning to end.
Less than two hours have passed and, drenched in sweat and rouged in grape juice, I am febrile, weak as a babe as I step out from the humid enclosure of the vines and into the light of the fiendish sun. It is the first collective rest of the morning and I can't remember if I've ever been this tired. My legs feel just-foaled, not quite able to hold me as I try to stand. My body is seared but somehow exquisitely exalted and the all-absorbing sensation is not unlike a post-coital one. I look about for Fernando, who must be on the other side of the hill that separates the two fields. There he is, waving me toward him. Because they're so beautiful, I can't resist limping among the vines rather than along the sandy path beside them. Here and there among the green, succulent leaves, one or two are tarnished gold by the sun, crisped and beginning to curl. A symptom of autumn.

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