While I do enjoy traveling in person, I am often quite supremely content with armchair travels. Recently, this post I happened upon led me to read the memoir ‘A Thousand Days in Venice’ by Marlena de Blasi. (Thank you, Becca!)
I’ve had an enchantment with Italy for as long as I can remember–courtesy of my Italian heritage plus my adoration of aged buildings and villages with a long history behind them.
I’m smitten with things I can touch that have been around for generations, been touched and seen by people for decades upon decades. Aren’t antiques and old buildings and such full of unexplainable vibes? Sometimes I’m rather mystical about such, sure that I can feel vibes and warmth from whatever the object may be. What stories they must hold! Thus Italy, with so many ancient buildings and old things still in use today enchants me.
While I found this memoir to be just a wee a bit disjointed at the start, the telling smooths out into a compelling story of life and love in Italy. This book is experienced through emotions, the descriptiveness is more about feelings than about sights/sounds/smells/touches–although those are very present as well.
What I gained the most from this book were insights to a relationship–a man and a woman navigating the mazes of a relationship. Specifically,an Italian man and an American woman navigating the relationship amid cultural confusion based upon the simple desire to be together.
“Italians adore complication. A small farrago, some short agony, this they need everyday.” – this quote amused me greatly, as it applies to most members of my Dad’s side of the family–some less so than others, some to dramatic effects.
“We are the festival. Wherever we go, different backdrops, different people, always us.” – Fernando
“Living as a couple never means that each gets half. You must take turns at giving more than getting.”
Something about this book has me wanting it on my shelf where I can mark passages to wander to now and again–for me, that’s one of the highest marks of praise I can give a book.