Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Tuesday, February 10, 2009
I started this on Saturday, 2/7/09 in the afternoon.

Why does the movie Under The Tuscan Sun make me cry, practically bawl, my eyes out?! It brings up such… Longing? But for what?

I’d never seen the entire movie beginning to end until the Saturday before last. The WE network was running a movie marathon of sorts; You’ve got Mail, Sleepless in Seattle, You’ve got Mail, Sleepless in Seattle, Under The Tuscan Sun. I got home around 4pm from running errands at Kohl’s and Target for our weekend trip to Texas for a nephew’s wedding and for once got everything on my list. (We leave Friday the 13th). You’ve Got Mail was on so I watched it from about ½ way through. Vic got home from hunting shortly after I did and sat on the couch to watch it with me. When Sleepless In Seattle came on, we ordered a pizza and watched it. We ate pizza, laughed while making up our own radio talk show call names, (you know, like Sleepless In Seattle) Cuckoo in CA, Skitzo in Syracuse, Rad in Raleigh and had a great time.

When Under The Tuscan Sun (“UtTS”) came on, I watched the beginning while Hubby checked his email. Once he was finished, he wanted to flip channels since he doesn’t like UtTS (except for Diane Lane of course!) and I was ok with that since he would’ve only annoyed me had we watched it. Besides, I knew he’d fall asleep in no time and I could finish watching it in peace!

About a ½ hour later, I turned UtTS back on. There was a rolling shot of a field of sunflowers. “Like in France!” I thought to myself. Later, they were mushroom hunting amongst trees in a hilly area. “Like in Provence!” I thought. As the end neared, something started welling up inside of me. “Huh, what’s this?” I wondered. At the end of the movie, I started crying. This quickly progressed into stifled sobs as I was overwhelmed with a feeling I can’t quite put my finger on or name. I clamped my hand over my mouth so I wouldn’t wake Hubby, who was asleep & snoring next to me.


Was it the similarities to France that got me going? (Refer to my piece “Haunted By A Country”). Was it a past life or a present one in a parallel plane or universe trying to make itself known for some reason? Was it my longing for the physical interaction of friendship? (While I am so grateful and thankful for my friends, all of my friends, sometimes emails, chats & what not aren’t enough). What?!

I don’t know. Not yet at least.

I haven’t been writing. Barely anything since November. Burned out again. I haven’t felt the least bit creative or inspired. (I know, I’m supposed to write regardless. Insert raspberry here!) The beginning of this new year brought on being overwhelmed followed by another sinus infection. (And now another one though I suspect this is the same one I’ve had since November – I need to make the Inn less hospitable apparently!) But, I did start exercising again. (Be careful, the sky may fall at any moment as a result!) Of course I haven’t lost any weight yet – fat turning to muscle, blah, blah, blah – insert another raspberry!

While watching UtTS again this past Saturday (I now own it on DVD. Blame Target’s Valentine DVD sale! I only went in there Tuesday to buy The Secret Life Of Bees!), I began thinking, “Ok, I’ve (finally) got the wonderful man/husband thing down, so check that off the list. (I’m by no means trying to minimalize the amazing man I’m married to or what a blessing & life saver our relationship is by saying this). Hubby would have no problem in the least if I wanted to go and do anything on my own (like travel) since if it’s not a place he’s interested in, he’d be no fun to have along! (We both know, acknowledge and accept this). I like to think I’m independent. In reality, I’m not. Not really. I hate flying and doubt I can do so by myself without having a heart attack or stroke. I drive but I still don’t have my license. (Long story for another time, health reasons). I have a permit which I’ve had for well over 2 years now and I haven’t made any attempts to actually move forward and get my license. (I am actually going to begin working on this when we get back from TX). I need a licensed driver with me in the truck when I drive. Technically. ;-) I have never lived completely on my own. (My first apartment I had with a roommate). I also have a huge fear factor complex so while Liz Gilbert may be able to trapse around Italy, India and Indonesia by herself and nothing unfortunate happened to her, I am fairly certain something horrible would happen to me! (Yes, you can also call this paranoia, but since I’ve had horrible things happen to me in the past, perhaps I’m just more painfully aware of the possibilities).

I am comfortable with taking walks, shopping, eating (and driving ;-> ) by myself…

But, I’m getting a head of (or away from) myself now. Maybe. I think so at least.

A thought came to mind Sunday. Is this a case of “The grass is greener” and am I romanticizing Europe? (Namely France and now Italy). 2009 is supposed to be out year to get out of New Jersey. But, (there’s almost always a “but” isn’t there?) this economy may have us stuck where we are, indefinitely. And Hubby may be getting “temporarily” laid off for two months in the extremely near future. We’ll just have to wait and see, I guess. But, I’m antsy. We want to get away from the hassles of running this complex and have some peace & quiet, where our time is truly ours to do what we want with.

Again, I’m back to “I don’t know.”

Saturday afternoon, I called the library downtown to see if they had the book “Under The Tuscan Sun, At Home In Italy.” They did so we ran down there to pick it up before running to Foodtown for dinner supplies. I want to read the book to see what I glean from it. A clue perhaps to why the movie moves me so. The cover is giving me déjà vu but so far I don’t think it’s something I’ve already read.

Stay tuned.


Lizzi said...

Oh wow Jo! I just read your post "Haunted by a Country" and it was so familiar.... I took French in high school because a) I didn't want to take Spanish and b) I wanted to go on the exchange trip in the summer. I met some of my best friends in French and did get to go on the exchange trips to France twice (Paris and Provence) and from there went to Italy one summer. It would be so amazing for you to get to go there - with or without kids! You never know what's in store for you...could be a trip abroad!

I have this fantasy of selling everything, packing a suitcase, and moving Beau, Shane, and I to France. Totally unrealistic! Anyway, that's why I have so many travel memoirs/expat books in my personal library.

Brenda said...

There is something romantic about Europe. It just seems like this place that has always been here and always will be. It's old, mysterious, and has hot looking men who can't speak a word of English (a definite plus).

I saw UTS too, and feel the same feelings of missing something.

I went to Italy in 1979 for six weeks and had a marvelous time, and my "friend' and I still talk via email.

It's kind of sweet and romantic and very innocent, but I think we all yearn for that being swept off our feet, looking for something special, and sometimes it has been right under our noses the whole time.

You might also enjoy the movie, Shadows in the Sun. It has Josh Jackson from Dawson's Creek, and is a male version of UTS.

GardeningJo said...

Lizzi, sounds like you have some awesome memories! Thanks for reading Haunted By A Country. I'd love to pick up and move us though I'd have to stay in the US since Hubby's a Marine and way too proud of an American to ever move out of this Country!

WooHoo Brenda! :-)

6 weeks in Italy, what wonderful memories you have! (And not just of your 'friend' I think!)

Europe is romantic but it's not actual romance I'm longing for. I'm disgustingly in love with my Hubby and he sweeps me off my feet more times than I can count, so I'm good in that dept! (I've been there & done that with foreign guys, ones that spoke english & ones that didn't! Eh, just not my thang anymore, lol!)

There's something else going on, which I have a feeling is stemming from a few different areas which I have to take some time to address.

Thauna said...

That movie really strikes a chord with me too and produces a deep sense of longing. That is a great word for it. My longing IS about Italy...I've had a deep longing for Italy since I was young..my stepmom and her family in all their Italian-ness were so exotic to me, and so different from my small town Utah life/family. Someday I will go.

Also, I'm so drawn to the story of moving somewhere so beautiful and starting over. Leaving heartbreak behind and finding new love, new land, new man.

The book is very different from the movie though. Renovating the house and land is about the only constant between the two stories. Book is lovely however...and that may help you pinpoint what about the story is drawing the longing out in you.