Embrace the Essence of Italian Bliss

A Journey to Serenity and Simplicity

The Autumn has Arrived!

The Autumn has Arrived!

The reassuring voice of my mother and a gentle nudge slowly brought me back to reality. But like the capricious child I once was, who resisted going to school, I rolled over to the other side of the bed, curling up my body and clutching the warm sheets as if someone might snatch them away. However, my mother’s infinite patience prevailed, and she massaged my shoulders, urging me to rise.

I turned toward her, offering a faint smile and outstretched arms, seeking the first hug of the day, surrendering to the most beautiful sound in the world: the utterance of my name by someone I love.

I got up, slipped on my turtle-shaped slippers, and shuffled towards the kitchen with half-closed eyes, succumbing to the tantalizing temptation of the freshly baked cake. The sweet fragrance of butter mingled with sugar dispelled any desire for more sleep. It was precisely what I needed to start the first day of autumn right.

Through the wide window, I gazed at the golden leaves that had appeared on the trees in our garden a few days ago, immersing myself in the sense of balance typical of the equinox when moments of light and darkness harmonize perfectly.

For the inhabitants of my village, who still lead a life attuned to the seasons, this astronomical event signals the end of the harvest. After the hard work in the fields, it’s time to enjoy the fruits of our labor. But as my grandmother always said, and she knew the toil well, one must be frugal and prepare for the arrival of winter by stockpiling provisions for the toughest months of the year.

My sister and I devoured that cake as if it were our last meal while our cat Hercules nibbled on the crumbs that fell under the table. “If you want to join the grape harvest, you’d better hurry!” added my mother as she rushed off to clear away the jam, cups, and empty plates.

Mist floated among the rows, dampening the air with tiny water droplets, carrying the fresh scent of the earth and dissipating the sweet pungent aroma of ripe grapes. The noise of iron wheels on carts and the voices of villagers greeting each other melded with the buzz of insects, and I couldn’t wait to get started.

For us, the grape harvest wasn’t just work; it was an opportunity to come together in joy with other families we might not have seen in a while. A time for celebration, for sharing a meal under the sun, with our gaze lost on the rolling hills or in the cellar, immersed in the scent of the must, where we laughed, joked, and renewed old bonds.

I remember how much I enjoyed taking off my shoes and feeling the refreshing sensation of the still damp earth, contrasting the beads of sweat that trickled down my face. Occasionally, to break the rhythm, my purple-stained fingers caressed the back of my dog Pindy, who always stayed by my side, immobile and with her tongue out, crouched under the vines.

I loved quenching my thirst by eating those round, juicy grapes, flavored with the intoxicating taste of the sun, while I watched flocks of unknown birds swirling above my head.

For the village people, this time of year represents the triumph of light but also an unconscious, ancient fear of the impending darkness that can loom menacingly if the harvest isn’t abundant. In remote villages like ours, where time has a different dimension from that of the cities, various local rituals follow the plowing, simple and genuine like the people of these places.

My mother, for example, from the time she was a child, spent her autumn afternoons collecting berries, leaves, and branches to decorate our home. We always had candles, hand-made centerpieces in the typical colors of the season, and some sage twigs hanging on doors and windows. If the harvest had been bountiful, we enjoyed filling baskets with seasonal fruits and vegetables, which were placed at the entrance and then offered as gifts to visitors.

On evenings when the temperature was still pleasant, my sister and I went for a walk in the woods, carrying the leftovers of dinner to feed the animals. As our grandmother had taught us, those living in the countryside must lend a hand.

The sun of early afternoon illuminated my bare feet when fatigue finally set in. My skin was sticky with sweat, my hair disheveled, and my legs weary. But judging by the faces around me, it wasn’t just me who didn’t have an easy time. The morning’s laughter and banter had faded as the hours passed, replaced by a faint and indistinct murmur, serving more to break the silence than anything else.

I handed my scissors to Uncle Fausto, marking my defeat, and lay down on the highest part of the hill with half-closed eyes, dreaming of the vibrant chirping of a flock of swallows soaring through the sky, probably oblivious to the countless perils they would face on their long journey to warmer places.

But it wasn’t a dream. Autumn had truly arrived!

From The Heart Of Italy My Gift For You (Free Download)

Tuscany Slow Living Inspiration

Experience the magic of Tuscany in your everyday life with my FREE PDF guide:

Tuscany Slow Living Inspiration: Heal Your Life and Embrace Quietness

This printable digital book is designed to help people organize their daily lives while embracing the slow living philosophy.

It includes prompts for journaling, Tuscan quotes, mindfulness exercises, and informational sections about Tuscan culture, cuisine, and traditions

↓ ↓ ↓

Please enable JavaScript in your browser to complete this form.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Next Post

Embracing Tuscan Tranquility: Creating a Cozy Home Atmosphere - Part 2

Tue Oct 25 , 2022
If you’d like to recreate an Italian slow-living atmosphere at home, I’d like to let you know that I’ve previously published an article (you can find it here). In this second one, I want to offer you more advice that I might have missed the last time. Tuscan Slow Living at Home Recreating the serene […]