It has been exactly one month since I left Riga. And for the first time in ages, our city awaited snow on the 1st of November… without me being there. Meanwhile, we were celebrating Anikó’s birthday on that day by sunbathing and swimming in the Mediterranean Sea. I could be arrogant about this, but it just messes up the sense of seasons – having summer-ish weather in Autumn.
A strange feeling it is to discern November vibes in the air, although it feels like the last days of March when the sun is starting to burn a bit, the air is still chilly with a small flash of midseason* weather in the afternoons.
*at this moment I got lost for an hour in ARTTRAV and the vastness of the internet, just because of a strange urge to google “midseason in Italy”. And apparently, it’s something that we, people who come from the colder side of the world, rarely experience.
Here from all places I first saw how rapidly one national celebration changes into the preparation of another. After Halloween and 1st of November, not even one day passed when everything was replaced by Christmas decorations – on buildings, in shops and…I feel that it will not take long till they start playing Christmas songs everywhere. And it reminded me so much of this one picture I took when exploring abandoned houses in Latvia, August 2014 with David. When it’s still green outside, but commercial Christmas has entered the homes and hearts of everyone.
I can see now that it is a blessing to have these November celebrations in Latvia:
November 11 – The Bear Slayer’s Day // and November 18 — Proclamation Day of the Republic of Latvia. Because nothing Christmas-like will come before the end of 18th.
Not that it came like a huge discovery, but the only difference in my wannabe artist’s life – living abroad and living in Latvia – is the fact that I actually have the time and power of will to do art. Either it’s random meditational mandala-like objects, or liner sketches of our journeys, surroundings, people or places I’ve dreamed of. They will be carelessly water-colored with great care and precaution (contrasts, you see – contrasts everywhere). And it adds a huge share to the feeling of usefulness – when I see an end result. The same goes for blogging, playing music, even organizing (putting in order) things – if there is an aim to reach, if there is an end result to accomplish, it will be done with dedication. I need to see the point of doing things!
We have started something here.
A huge thanks go to the people from Mistero Buffo who got an idea, an inspiration, an inducement to drag us out of Acireale and show the beauty and diversity of this island. Not that we hadn’t thought of traveling as well. Last week on Saturday we went to Catania since we were not able to compromise with Interbus and it’s Fermatas and missed the “once in two hours” bus to Taormina.
Anikó’s carelessness and optimism in this situation combined with my peaceful attitude created a not very frequently experienced change of events.
“So the bus didn’t come. Ok, let’s go to Catania then!”- no complaining, no frustration.
But due to a change of weather on Sunday Marina and Pierpaolo brought us to Taormina anyway. And here you can clearly see that everything happens for a reason, because who would have thought that visiting Taormina would mean going on tree levels – Castalmola, Taormina and Taormina Mare. By foot? Quite difficult. It is around 9 kilometers – at least that’s what google maps say, the road’s going in circles, on highways, uphill and downhill – no pedestrian areas, of course, unpredictable bus traffic and unexpected expenses.
And this Sunday they are planning to take us to Syracuse.
But we, Latvians, have a saying – give the devil your little finger and he will take your whole hand – so now I’m looking at Venice, Naples and Malta, maybe… one day.
Anikó asked me a few days ago if I could imagine myself living in a place like this for the rest of my life, and I thought: I could, but I would miss Latvia too much.
The sea here is beautifully colored, but the salt hurts your eyes and the underwater rocks leave bruises. The sun is burning hot in midday, but coldness reaches you in the evenings – at least in October/ November. And without doubt, I would even miss the snow – that I realized just now when seeing all the snowfall posts. And it was accompanied by another revelation – I need more international friends on Facebook to even out the snow pictures!
Anyway, for now, this is the best place to be – for someone like me who’s still in the process of searching… for what, you will ask? Well, for almost everything.