Wednesday, November 01, 2006

...a Universe of Joy

"Death lies on her like an untimely frost
Upon the sweetest flower of all the field."

I was a little swayed on this post. It’s a special couple of days in Italy. All Saints Day, followed by All Souls Day. Last night I had a dream about my dear, dear wife, who passed away almost 6 years ago. I don’t know why she came to me in this dream, but I am grateful for the contact.

She wasn’t a involved in the wine world, but she loved wine. Whenever we would go to Italy and stay in the vineyards, the Italians would love her. She was a bright star in my world.

Once, at Castello di Monsanto in Tuscany, we spent a few days there in the guest house. The Bianchi family was warm and ever so gracious in their hospitality. It was a wonderful slice of watermelon-time.

In October, I ventured back to the estate, once again to have a meal and to visit the winery. Laura Bianchi and her father, Fabrizio, hosted my visit. The winery has grown as has the Bianchi family. But that is something one can read about in many places.

In four places on this recent trip I felt a presence. Actually, in five. I’ll talk about the fifth first. I was on my way from Montalcino to Montechiello and planned a stop in Pienza. Having only seen the hill-top village by fast moving bus and from a distance, somewhere in the distant past, this little town took on mythic proportions.

Iris and David’s blog, We’re Just Sayin’ threw a few logs on the fire. And Zeffirelli did too, so very long ago. I guess you had to be there.

My dear-one-who-now-has-passed-away, likes to remind me, from time to time, that matter changes form, but cannot be created or destroyed. I love her scientific side now. Anyway, she zinged me in Pienza, a couple of times. Out of the blue, she appeared, made eye contact, and around a cosmic corner she retreated, as if to say, “I’m kind of busy now, but just checking in with you. You OK? Good, gotta go now, love you, bye.”

Parting is such sweet sorrow.

Some of you might be thinking that I am downright disrespectful of the departed. Too bad. Deal with it. Were you there? Did you die? As far as I am concerned, she can appear all she wants to. It’s OK with me. I know the pain she had, the pain we shared. I’m working my way through the tunnel and she’s stardust riding on a moonbeam. Pienza, who would have thought? And I kept wondering why this place, another hill-top town, kept calling me. Thanks, Great Spirit!

Where were we? The other four places I felt a presence? It’ll have to wait for the next time. It’s another kind of presence anyway. But a presence, on the wine trail in Italy, that is worth telling about. Next time.

For now, a glass of Vin Santo, a bowed head. An enduring sadness surrounded by a universe of joy.

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