Going away for an extended period of time always brings change in me. New ideas. New perspectives. New desires. Five weeks in Italy felt like a start, not a finished experience, and as much as I would have loved to stay longer, life back home required my return to California.
And on my first day back, I am reflecting.
I created some new words & images cards while in Guardia, and since I wanted them to reflect my experience and be accessible to locals I created and printed them in Italian (with some finessing translation help from friends.) This truly taught me the challenge of the subtleties of language. Some translations were effortless, others a compromise.
I now find myself writing in my head in Italian. I once spoke the language rather decently, but that was long ago. This trip brought it back to me, bit by bit. I did not return to the level of fluency I once had, but my mind chewed on the language like a delightful delicacy.
Certain experiences impacted me greatly, like when we were recruited to pull flowering weeds from a manicured garden. No one quite understood my sadness over the experience.
What do the weeds think
as we pluck them from the earth?
Their pedigree and breed
insufficient for our affection,
their flowers unable to seduce.
Unwanted, we say. Intrusive. Objectionable.
We who bring down the axe.
And then there were thoughts I had prior to arriving in Guardia yet had never found the image I sought. Here is where the blending came in.
I often think of all the locks around us, between us.
This is just a small taste of my experience in Guardia. Here are a few atmospheric images to help plant you where I was.
Every time I leave Italy a piece of my heart and soul remains behind. There is something about the land, the language, and the lifestyle that resonates with me. Yes, I hold this (& that) moment.