In 1958, Domenico Modugno, singer from the small Sicilian island of Lampedusa, wrote the famous song Volare. My guess is that most everyone knows the song, right? But what most people outside of Italy don’t know is that the original title of the song was Di Blu, Dipinto di Blu, which translates to “Blue, Painted in Blue”, blue referring to the color of the Sicilian sky Modugno loved so much.
This very morning, just after breakfast, I heard a splash and turned towards the pool in time to see Don, my water-loving friend, dive into the pool. I got a great photo of him swimming with the various hues of blue in the background and the song “Volare” came to me (photo above).
Later, a few of us went swimming in the sea. It was so salty I couldn’t help but float.Would you believe I forgot to bring my camera along? I missed out on capturing the images of a cute teenager sitting on the steps leading to the sandy beach, talking to her boyfriend. And just beyond the teens, her father and grandfather were fishing off the dock. The old man’s eyes were as blue as the sea and he had a hard lean look about him. I talked to him and he softened up a bit when I spoke to him in the Sicilian dialect. He showed me the few fish he had caught. And, just a few hours later, while back at the villa, a thunderstorm quickly rolled in with torrents of rain.
Yesterday was a day of vicissitudes. I sadly said goodbye to the yoga retreat participants from Week I, met up with my friend Sebastiano, and off to Catania I went. Later Sebastiano dropped Marilyn and me off at the airport where, eventually, we met up with the second group. And I found myself feeling great joy in welcoming the second group.
I haven’t had much time to blog and am determined to post a few photos and include some information about Sicily. The retreat is going well. The yoga sessions have been powerful and doing the sessions outside in this beautiful setting is an exceptional experience. During these few rain storms, we have a perfect place to practice yoga under an awning, still overlooking the sea and stormy skies. I take advantage of the walls to do yoga using Wall as Prop! Got to be clever with these things…
I am quite fond of the ancient Sicilian symbol, La Trinacria. This image has the face of Medusa, who has the ability to transform bad spirits into stone. Medusa is surrounded by three legs, each leg representing the three corners of the island of Sicily. When the Romans took over Sicily, they took the ancient symbol of La Trinacria and added Wheat to the design. Sicily, for the Romans, was the “bread basket” of the empire because her wheat fed the Roman legions. (first image below has now wheat…and is a more modern version)
The Greeks brought Olives and Grapes, olive oil production and wine production! The olive oil was used in foods as well as for illuminating the Greek temples, whose ruins still dot the island.