Our trips to Italy are about art in several ways. Many of our trips contain an art component, and people travel with us to be with great teachers to learn and develop an art form. Underlying these trips and all our trips however, is the fact that how we live life can and should be an artful experience.
It is hard to remember this, particularly in this season of commerce. It is tough to remember it in the U.S. generally because we are a consumer society, which ultimately is driven by money. Money is not art nor artful. And the reason Italy resonates so much with Americans is because it reminds us that life is art.
Italy doesn’t do this consciously. It is simply the way Italians live. They relish life and immerse themselves in it. We can’t help but notice this when we visit. It is a marvel to us. It is discernible in just about everything that is done, in everything we come into contact with while in Italy. As the ever wise Suor Giovanna, our convent B&B host said, “We live in our art.”
Perhaps one of the rudest awakenings Kristi and I experience each and every time we return home from Italy, is when we board the plane home. After weeks of exquisitely simple yet exceptional food we are served what a commercial society has come to deem acceptable in some of the worst food imaginable. From the sublime to the horrific!
The way we live here is not inevitable. We have come to find a much more artful way of living in Morganton, NC our home of 2.5 years now. And every single one of the people who travel with us returns home embracing the artful life that was in them all along.