Tuesday, July 26, 2011

ehh.. blissful morn(s)!

Since I made it back to the island my energy has been almost entirely devoted to making them bloody curtains. Haven't been to the sea once.. shame oh shame.. instead I've been cooped up indoors watching youtube stand-up comedy clips as I pin away at seemingly endless seams (aa pun).

But free mornings (free from strict working hours away from the home) have seen me take a casual philosophical bent to life... the day stretches out in front of you.. full of possibility.. I can now wake up at the decent hour of 8am (after having stayed up till 1am.. a decent adult hour to stay up till) and make my own iced-tea, treat myself to a visit to the Farmers' Market in Ta' Qali (I just cannot suggest this enough: low prices and cliche farmer friendliness, no sheep shagging, bliss) and cook up the healthy weekly menu I've been promising myself .. yesterday was grilled tomato, mushroom and olive 'stew' and a chicken and egg-noodle side.. today it's GAZPACHO!! (and grilled fat-ass marrow!)

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Poi, dolce vita che te ne vai ...

... sul Lungotevere in festa

concerto di viole e mondanità

profumo tuo di vacanze romane ...

Just back and still dreaming of waking up in Rome.. ideally on a sunday just so that I could head down to the market in Porta Portese .. but for any other day I have Via del Governo Vecchio to retreat to.. or the beautifully named Via del Arco della Ciambella for sartorial tutoring and why not even a session in artiginal shoe making next door.. yes I have reason to cry as I sit here sweating on the horrible blue sofa!

Hot and sticky it was as well, to be sure, but with so much beauty to distract oneself with, Rome, as well as Bologna, rank highly on my flea-market-findings bar chart. Above and below are photos of some items at the Porta Portese market I didn't afford. Having restricted luggage space didn't help much either. At one point I had resigned myself to just look and take photos, but after a while it got too stressful so I also stopped taking photos of the lovely stalls.. pity.. I even failed to capture that lovely moment when a russian stall vendor whose stall was bedecked in Lenin memorabilia assumed we were Jewish and thrust a pocket watch and chain with the star of david in my face saying 'this. for you. nice'..

The following photo is a vintage shop in Via del Governo Vecchio.. Vestiti Usati Cinzia, no.45.. a real treasure trove and a shop owner with a passion for everything Fellini who sends half-hearted buyers who ask for discounts just because they only intend to wear the outfit once for a dress up party to ZARA and then on to hell.. three lovely dogs on short legs scamper around and that's just another big plus in my books.. The music in the shop is enough to get one to spend time in there, let alone the carefully sourced array of vintage dresses and bags and jewels and.. Just a pity that the store now lacks one of its most beautiful dresses, a three tiered pastel sheer dress from the early 1950s which fit like a glove. I'm happy to say that I am now broke but also grateful for the free silk scarf and much welcome discount. Go there and send my regards!

The shop below is one I luckily happened upon in Bologna. Memorie in Via de' Fusari, very close to Piazza Maggiore but somewhat hidden and all that more special for it. From this shop I decided I would only purchase very small items; the thought of a melt down at the airport due to excess luggage weight gave me nightmares on several nights. Instead (can you detect a pattern here?) I ended up splurging on an assortment of jewellery pieces, a sequinned top (forgot the date ai ai ai) which surprisingly enough suits me considerably and a beautiful shawl from the 1930s.. at this stage, the 20x40x50 hand luggage on wheels was about to give up on me!

At just 5, 10 or 15 euro a piece.. honestly.. would you leave such lovelies behind? (vain attempt to justify spree)

A beautiful bracelet in the current favourite colour combo, a double lp of Django Reinhardt classics for 5 euro from the Bolognetti on the Rocks stall, a cineteca fan (very useful indeed and a sad pun as well), a useless but funny certificate detailing the provenance of my name for 50 euro cents .. oh and the gratis silk scarf.

Loads of lovely postcards and italian-film related souveniers and a 'holy' bracelet from the Cathedral of San Petronio.. all flat and compact for the ryan-air flyer. bah!

A beautiful (and heavy) book about kimonos, the dyeing components and colour significance .. complete with cringe-worthy translations into English.. not so perfect Italian souvenier but lovely nevertheless.

The 1930s shawl below after hours of painstaking brushing with a tooth brush and the Art Deco inspired sequinned top below it..

I also helped myself to a kimono jacket in violet silk from the 60s.. the lining is subtle but pretty.. I really love the neck line and am now in an enlightened position vis a vis its colour at least, thanks to my new book:

Shobu-iro: viola tinto di un blu brillante che prende il nome dai petali di iris. Questa particolare tonalita era creata utilizzando lo spadice che si trova fra le foglie del fiore. Il color iris cosi come lo conosciamo oggi naque nella seconda meta del periodo Edo. Da sempre colore della regalita, il viola deve forse la sua aura al potere carismatico che esercita sulle persone.

... and THE dress!

... Roma bella, tu, le muse tue

asfalto lucido, "Arrivederci Roma"

monetina e voilà

c'è chi torna e chi va

la tua parte la fai, ma non sai che pena mi daaaaaaaa-ai