That's what Italians say when they want you to eat.
Literally, it means, "Eat, eat!" It really means
"Eat with gusto!"
husband's essence is true Italian. Eating and cooking are at the
core of his existence.
shows his love by feeding me. My preference is home-cooked
food. Italian cooking -- beyond pizza -- is my favorite. The
dining establishment of choice is our mountain home, with its
quiet, comfortable, and intimately private spaces -- our sitting
room, porch or dining room, depending on the season, away
from the hustle, bustle and clatter of restaurants.
husband knows all of this. Yesterday, for my birthday, he was
my personal Italian chef, cooking and feeding me all day long.
we attempted to walk off some of that huge mouth-watering
breakfast, enjoying the company of our dog-kids, stopping to chat
awhile with neighbors, and taking in the beauty of the trees and
late summer flowers, DH was back in the kitchen, whipping up
lunch. He prepared another of my favorite meals: linguine
con vongole (linguine with clams), redolent with the aroma of
garlic, oregano, parsley and basil.
wondered how Italians in Italy can have such a passionate love affair with food,
lingering long at the table as they do, and get away with it. Their incidence of
obesity, heart disease, diabetes, and many other Western diseases is low compared with ours.
They must know something we don't.
think I know some of their secret: Eat smaller portions,
talk about the pleasant things in life, and savor, savor, savor. I did
exactly that, and I was sated, but not at all stuffed.
took another long walk, this time among the lengthening shadows of
the tall pine trees. Perfect fall temperatures.
"Peaceful, it's oh
so peaceful here."
in the afternoon, DH was once again in the kitchen, preparing
dinner. Using fresh ingredients --no chemicals or
preservatives-- and simple preparation, DH prepared a
classic Italian dinner: a Portofino salad of spicy arugula, escarole and kale;
pork chops pounded thinly and lightly pan fried in olive oil and
garlic, then smothered with green onions and capers; and boiled,
then pan-fried red potatoes.
With the words, "Mangia Bene e Bevi! (Eat Well and
Drink!)" resonating in my thoughts, we sat down to
dinner. Leisurely, we wined and dined with pleasure. Simplicity in all its elegance
7:30 pm, we were officially both 50 years old. In the glow
of candlelight, we toasted in our new decade with Black Mountain
presented me with a birthday card. A beautiful black card
with a dramatic red heart with the words " I'd Marry You All
Over Again" across the top...and a sweet Happy Birthday
a personal chef who is a hopeless romantic like me, it doesn't get
better than this. My DH sees me and likes what he sees. He
perceives and appreciates what he perceives. He loves me for
who I am. Just as I do him.
my dessert in life.
for your countless gifts of love.
You are my best birthday gift, DH.
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