Even though guests ask me so often what my favorite things are, I am always at a loss for a good answer! My favorites in Italy, in Europe? No, they say, my favorites in Umbria. For a second, I am relieved. After all, how hard of a question is that – I’ve lived here for over 40 years! What about my 20 years of Tuesdays (please stay-tuned for an imminent entry entitled My 20 Years of Tuesdays)? My mind is flooded with images, sensations, memories, and emotions which race by on fast-forward as I attempt to assemble and produce a mental list. Guests, surely anticipating something overwhelming from Mary, the Insider , wait in silence as I make a supreme – but fruitless – effort. The pause lingers – grows heavy – becomes uncomfortable – makes me feel inadequate. While my conjured up mental and jumbled list is rich, the things and places are not necessarily my favorites!
Just the other day during a leisure lunch with delightful Cooking Class guests, the dreaded question was asked again! I am never prepared for it (I certainly should be). The same awkward pause, weighty silence, the same uncomfortable feeling of inadequacy, the same quickly assembled mental list of many things and places came to my mind...but they were not necessarily my favorites.
Why in the world should this question be so hard to answer? Why in the world can I never come up with an intelligent, well-informed answer to share with those who are hoping for my answer? I don’t know the answer to that question either – it seems I really am clueless and inadequate. SO…I have promised myself that I WILL ponder this question during the lazy days of August and that I WILL come up with a list of a Few of My Favorite Things!
I wish I were clever enough to put them to music (remember the wonderful tune and words from The Sound of Music?). I hope you won’t give up on me – please stay tuned – check back often for THE LIST. It might just include some of your favorites, as well. In the meantime, I would love to know what some of your favorite things in Umbria are!
By the way, “Inadequacy” . Now – that is another topic that fascinates me. What triggers feelings of inadequacy? Do we all suffer from feelings of inadequacy? I’ll think about that also during these lazy summer days! Please check back to see if I do any better with that question!