Summertime in Italy, 2017.
Olives, 2015.


Italy is my home base from early June to mid August. Ten weeks away from your everyday urban habitat helps you see the world with new eyes.

So much of our lives runs on automatic pilot and changing surroundings is an easy way to shake things up. Anything that takes you out of custom and habit – be it as small as taking a different route – changes your presence and perspective.

I love our simple life in Italy. I get a sense of being out in the world, and at the same time, so far away from everything.

Daily issues are immediate and non-intellectual, such as, where is the after bite lotion, I have forty mosquito bites all over my body because I was so stupid I went on watering the garden in my bikini.

Or, is it too much fish if we order the crudo and polpo for antipasti at dinner, and fish for secondi, when we are making a fish pasta for lunch the following day. Serious decisions. And smaller things, such as, why isn’t the compost working. Should we be worried about those ants. Looks like the road has collapsed.

Then again, no matter how present you are in your daily tasks, new habits begin forming fast. They give you a chance to escape in your head, and start living on autopilot again.

Changing surroundings is not a long-lasting answer to any problem in our lives. But it teaches you things.

My biggest revelation this summer was understanding more fully than before that most things going on in the world do not concern me.

The garbage truck that makes a loud noise when I am meditating, or the neighbors dogs barking, have got nothing to do with me – unless I choose to get annoyed and make them my issue… Like the truck was picking up the garbage in order to bother me.

Like someone is not answering your email to make your job more difficult. Like the store was out of the product you wanted to buy just to get to you.

Most things in the world have nothing to do with us, ultimately even the love or irritation someone feels when looking at us, talking to us, being around us.

Everyone has their own thing going on and everyone’s doing the best they can, in their situation.

What makes us suffer most are all those shoulds and woulds and maybes and speculations in our head. Most of them, none of our business.

Instead of fighting against every tiny detail, every wrong opinion, every tone in someone’s voice and every surprise delay on our way,

to learn to mind our own business,

to take life in as it comes, and choose to love it.

Something great there.