Posts Tagged ‘italy’

I fondly recall one of our driving trips through Europe. Looped parts of Switzerland, Italy, Austria and then back to Germany.

Annie, who was young, would send daily messages to her Nana (my Mom) informing her of our activities and where we would be staying.

One of my ideas, on this particular journey, was to stop and see Otzi, in Bolzano, Italy. We talked about it as we headed toward the Italian-Austrian border. No, Otzi was not an old  friend of ours. Although he was quite old. Otzi is the well-preserved mummy of a fellow who died about 3000 years B.C.  That’s a very looooong time.

Ice is good for so many things. Bumps, bruises, margaritas and the preservation of bodies!

I was fascinated. I had read that the scientists could tell us the contents of his last meal. What his diet generally consisted of and what his overall health was like when he was alive. They even knew how he died!

But there were also two other people in the car. My male partner was just itching to show Annie a castle. What is it with power tools and huge fortresses?

Castle or Otzi?

The castle won. I didn’t get to see my mummy. We continued over the Austrian border and into Germany.

I was just as fascinated by the isolated Mad King Ludwig who lived in the Neuschwanstein Castle. He was found dead, at forty-one, in the nearby lake with his Doctor in waist deep water. Weird. His brother Otto had also been declared insane. Let’s just keep those genes in the family. Thank you very much!

We toured the castle upon the hill. But we missed the last bus heading down toward the little town. So, we started hoofing it.  Of course, it started pouring. Then it became quite dark in the woods. Not a sound and not a person around anywhere. Totally creepy!

I said, aloud and maybe even a bit smugly, “Well, at least, if anything happens to us in these woods, Nana knows just where we are.  Thank God for that!”

Annie stops, looks up and says, “Ummmm, Nana thinks we are in Bolzano, Italy visiting Otzi.”

So my Mummy thought we were with the mummy while we were actually in the midst of madness.

Anyway, it really was a wonderful adventure filled with a lot of laughs. I do recommend visiting the castle and the surrounding areas. It is a beautiful part of the world.

Do some reading on poor King Ludwig and Otzi. Both very interesting subjects.

And here’s my last bit of advice. Always let someone know where you are! But make sure it’s the right place!

Have a lovely weekend!!

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I receive an Agriturismo newsletter from Italy in my email every month or so. Basically a taunting, “You could be here!” type of thing.

Well, not really. It’s more of an invite, “Why don’t you come see what you are missing?”

Agriturismo is basically two Italian words melded into one. Agriculture and tourism for you English speakers. Sort of like the word melt and weld=meld.

In a nutshell? It is a vacation in a rural farmhouse while enjoying locally grown food and wine. Sigh. Utterly peaceful except for the odd fox trying to get into a hen-house and making a racket.  They are all over Italy. Not the odd fox. I am referring to the agriturismos.

Outside Bologna

Outside Bologna

I was fortunate enough to have this experience more than once. That is why the love affair between Italy and me will never end.

But that is not even the reason for this posting. At the end of the newsletter there was a quote that caught my eye. I am not even researching to see if it is accurate. I like it that much.

Lorenzo the Magnificent once said, “Whoever wants to be happy, let him be so: of tomorrow there’s no knowing”.

Lorenzo (in the 1440s) had it going on!

And I would like to add something besides “Thanks, Lorenzo, for the art!”

Yes, let people be happy. Allow them their joy. Keep your negativity to yourself.

But what I might add is this. Every day we have a choice. Like Lorenzo said “Whoever WANTS to be happy…” We can be happy or not.

I look at it like this. If you have your health, a roof over your head and a meal in your belly then you have way more than most folks in the world. You should be happy about that. If you can’t be happy and want to spend the day being negative? Guess what? You’ve wasted a day of your life feeling badly or making others feel badly. If you don’t want to be happy then don’t regret the wasted days.

But do allow others to be happy.

Of tomorrow there’s no knowing.

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