Embrace the Essence of Italian Bliss

A Journey to Serenity and Simplicity

The Magic of Febbruary

The Magic of Febbruary

When I was still in high school, I used to spend the weekends of February at my grandmother’s house to enjoy the tranquility of the countryside in the most unusual month of our calendar.

Ah, February! What a wonderful month!

The time of year when you can observe the dance of the forces of Darkness and those of Light intertwining in the air with their sinuous movements. They twirl together, embracing each other, taking turns leading the dance.

Now one is in charge, now the other.

Spring makes its way, challenging Winter, and the first daisies sprout in the garden. In the woods, the drumming of the woodpecker echoes, and the tree buds start to swell. Slow but determined, one day at a time, the young Maiden advances, carrying the torch of life.

But the Lord of Cold is not easily intimidated. Sudden snowfalls, the scent of frost in the early morning hours, and the smell of burning wood in the streetsalleys all prove it. “It’s too soon!” you can hear him lament among the undergrowth, “I’m still the King!”

Only in February is it possible to witness the coexistence of opposites in action.

When the weather was good, Grandpa Giuseppe loved to spend his days working the land, with dirty hands and muddy boots. However, he was so stubborn that he thought he could bend the weather conditions to his will, forgetting the climatic capriciousness of this month. “It doesn’t snow anymore. We need to plant the seedlings” he would start saying from the day of Candlemas, and due to his usual impatience, he wasted a lot of time every time the nightly ice ruined his plans.

I had fun watching him as he worked. Hidden in the kitchen, behind the curtains, with my feet close to the old wood-burning stove, I burst into hearty laughter when I saw him in the distance, running his hands through the few hairs left on his head because, once again, the cold had wreaked havoc. It wasn’t malice on my part, but what could I do when I saw the same scene every year?

Then, when his anger had subsided, he would grab his coat to go to the shop to buy more poor plants, and I would accompany him because I knew that on the way back, we would stop to take a walk in the woods, to observe its slow awakening and savor the scent of the water-soaked earth.

But perhaps what February has to offer is the clarity of its night sky. I still remember those endless nights when I stayed outside, covered from head to toe with a hot water bottle in hand, to observe the immense cosmos and let myself be enveloped by the stellar radiance, accompanied only by the biting cold and the occasional barking of a distant dog.

There it is, Orion, the legendary hunter who dominates the winter nights, with his hundred or so stars with imaginative names: “the giant’s shoulder” “the giant’s leg” “the combatant”, the “horse’s head”…

The Big Dog, with its nose, Sirius, the brightest star in the sky, which occasionally disappeared behind a group of passing clouds, long and rounded, lazily drifting across the sky.

And then there were the “nameless ones” all those clusters of twinkling lights, whose brilliance washed over me, illuminating the darkness of the cosmos and making me forget the cold.

I burned the midnight oil to watch them, to tell them my secrets and desires of the heart, and then, with cold feet and a runny nose, I dragged myself into the kitchen to dip Grandma’s rusks in warm milk flavored with honey until sleep forced me to go to bed.

How beautiful February is!

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

Tuscany Slow Living Inspiration

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Tuscany Slow Living Inspiration: Heal Your Life and Embrace Quietness

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

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