Flora is my mothers first name. She died over twenty years ago and still her memory and influence is strong in my life. The picture is of her as a young woman showing off her sassy-side and it always makes me laugh which is what mom was very good at. I'm sure thats where I got my sense of humor.
Growing up we often heard stories of the beautiful little town in Italy where mom was born. It is called Bagni de Lucca, which means "baths of Lucca". It sits in the rolling hills hot springs countryside in magical Tuscany.
Italy is a must visit place at least once in your lifetime. There is a passion in this culture to absolutely taste all that life has to offer and a license to deeply feel whatever is thrown in your path.
Family of coarse was of huge importance in my Italian upbringing and mom was the central figure of our family. When she died from cancer much too early in her life, my sisters, brother and I where left with finding new ways to connect which didn't involved going to visit Mom. Taking this trip together to Mamas birth place is an exciting and fitting solution.
So as Mothers Day approaches I journey across the ocean with sisters Kathleen and Karen supported by their spouses and also with my sweetheart Noi. My brother Oman will join us on the next trip and we look forward to that.
We begin our Pilgrimage in Rome, with a visit to Assisi home of St. Francis and then venture north to Tuscany where our villa awaits in Bagni de Lucca. I am sure this adventure will be a mixture of new magnificent sites to see and seeing with new eyes, reminiscing of old times and engaging in frequent laughter and maybe even a few tears.
Consider yourself included on our pilgrimage and why not consider including your mother on your own pilgrimage. All (ka)Blog post from now until Mothers Day will be about the journey of the heart. I would be thrilled if you were along with us. Sharing this experience with you, who have also been like family to me is a privilege and a joy. I appreciate the time we have spent together and believe that time to be a precious value. All we have really is time as I am reminded by how James Taylor put it perfectly as he wrote...the secret of life is enjoying the passage of time. Well said James.
Thanks for your time...ciao,