I’ve been reading an unusual and interesting book that Deborah suggested: A Fortune-teller Told Me: Earthbound Travels in the Far East, by Tiziano Terzani. After being told by a fortune-teller in Hong Kong not to fly for a year, the author, a long-time journalist in Asia, decided to heed the warning and spent the year traveling across Asia by many other modes of transportation. The book is an account of that journey. Terzani was born and lived the first 18 years of his life in Florence, but became fascinated with the Orient in his 20's and lived most of his life in various parts of Asia.
In the book, Terzani writes: “Every place is a goldmine. You only have to give yourself time…and soon, the most insignificant place becomes a mirror of the world, a window on life, a theatre of humanity.”
This week, as I’ve settled more into the daily habits of life in Italy, I readily agree with Terzani. For the first few weeks, I was intimidated by many things, but now that I’ve become familiar with the daily chores and activities, the driving, the neighbors and the neighborhood, I’m realizing what a treasure I’ve found.
Terzani also writes at great length about the power of belief, as he visits many cultures that have strong beliefs in magic, and observes that it is one’s beliefs that create, or at least facilitate much of what happens in life. He relates how Christian missionaries, after years living amongst people who use ancient rituals for healing, often find that the beliefs of the people they were once trying to convert make more sense, and have more value, at least in that setting, than their own Christian beliefs.
I have long believed in magic, and for many years have taught others about the power of our thoughts. My journey in Italy has come about by virtue of my beliefs and the use of my mind to create a life that challenges, inspires and fulfills me. Several years ago I began to envision living in Italy near a small village, and here I am. It hardly seems possible, but it’s true. And the more I settle into that reality, the more eager I am to clarify my visions of the future. I’ve fully realized many of the goals that I set a few short years ago. So what’s next? I need to think carefully about what I want to experience, and this is the perfect place to fashion goals for the next five years. Undoubtedly, Italy is in my future, and I will be living in Italy more in the years to come. But the specifics are still vague and unformed. The desire is sufficient to lead me forward.
In the meantime, it is essential to savor my time in Zagarolo, and make the most of this trove of treasure that is currently my home.