Wednesday, April 4, 2007

Artviva Newsletter Spring April 2007

Spring Fever, Italian Style

Italians are outdoor people, not in sporty sort of way (although they do ski but I think that’s just because of the outfits and the sunglasses) - it’s just that they just love being outside. In the warmer months, I sometimes wonder why anyone even bothers having a house at all. As soon as April hits, the whole country heads outside, to eat, drink talk and just generally soak in the beauty of the bella stagione (the beautiful season). People begin to linger just a little longer over their after work apperitivo, after dinner they gather in the nearest piazza. As you walk the streets the night air is filled with ringing laughter and animated conversation. I can only describe the collective mood as delighted, as if the entire nation had let out a collective giggle.

And oh, the countryside! There’s nothing like watching the earth suddenly come to life before your eyes. Everything is in full, lush bloom. The hillsides are impossibly green, dotted with explosions of yellow, red and lavender that take your breath away.

I’m reminded of the film that made me decide to visit Italy for the first time, Enchanted April. Set in the 1920s, it follows the adventures of four dispirited English women as they leave behind dreary old England for a rented villa in Tuscany. The film manages to be both poignant and laugh out loud funny. The performances are stellar- although the Tuscan spring steals the show. I guarantee it‘ll lift your spirits, and probably send you running to your travel agent.

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Until next week …

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