Wednesday, 9 May 2007

Touched by a book

When was the last time you were inspired by a book you’ve read?

I like non fiction, travel tales and memoirs. Hence, I am often inspired. Recently, in The Lonely Planet Story, I read about how the founders Tony and Maureen Wheeler grew the company. It was such a source of inspiration for me, I promptly went out and bought “Tales from Nowhere” published by their company.

Years ago, after reading An Embarassment of Mangoes by Ann Vanderhoof, of how she and hubby put their careers on hold, rented out their house, and sailed around the Caribbean for 2 years, I started dreaming of sailing away into the sunset.

When Remedial Rumination mentioned Frances Mayes in her blog, I remember how my trip to Tuscany materialised after reading the book Under the Tuscan Sun by Mayes.

I was transfixed after reading her beautifully written memoir about taking chances, living in Italy, restoring an abandoned villa called "Bramasole" in the spectacular Tuscan countryside, at a time when I was also rebuilding my life. The unexpected treasures at every turn like the faded frescoes beneath the whitewash in her dining room, a vineyard under wildly overgrown brambles in the garden, the vibrant markets and her loving descriptions of food, recipes, and gardening tips add sensuality to the book. The book touched me in so many ways, I even bought the DVD and watched the movie several times.

It's no surprise that I visited Italy soon after, starting with picturesque Tuscany (duh!), then northwards to the ancient city of Bologna, followed by Venice - the famous city on water, to the coastal town of Trieste before going down to Rome. It was a journey I had to make, all by myself like Mayes. I had the time of my life.

We're visiting Turkey in June. My friend Francesco has recommended a good book “Snow” by Orhan Pamuk, the talented Turkish novelist who examines modern Turkish society from various facets. I intend to get hold of this book soon for I know it will inspire me.

2 comments:

HollyGL said...

First of all, thank you for the nod! ;)

Beautifully written post. I've only been to Florence, but immediately fell in love with the city and the people in it.

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