Diary of Lisa Taylor, reluctantly 42 (and a half)

Or.. 'f.ck me I'm forty.. two.. and a half', though can look 38 on a - not so deluded - good day. Or 'How to reconcile a well experienced mind trapped in a still - but for how long? – youthful body.' Don't have the 30somethings angst/problems, neither have the resigned (?) ageing baby-boomers in safe family territory outlook yet. Here's how I cope, one day all sexy women will get old... but never invisible. © Lisa Taylor 2005/6/7/8/9. Jeez.. so much for the 42 and-a-half delusion

Monday, September 13, 2010

9 September - Windy Island

Somehwere in the Met there's a bunch of islands off the coast of Sicily which Toph glimpsed from the top of the mountain-hill at Erice one year and said "We must go there!". And here we are, arriving in windy Favignana w/o jackets. I did say, "Let's bring some, my mother warned me" but he didn't want to and boy do we need them. Arriving the day after the biggest downpour they've had in years blah blah.

cue is in the title, island of the winds. I think this is my first experience of the scirocco wind, now the fact that half the housing is below ground, or at least the gardens are, in the space carved out of the quarries, makes sense, the wind can't get at you down there and someone landing at one spot and not bothering to rekke the whole island may have, in times past, just got on his boat again and cleared off thinking nothing much grows here or nobody lives here. Then after he'd left the inhabitants would come out and have a party 'fooled the invader again, hurrah!'.

But when the wind abates, it's brilliant, give me a bicycle anytime and I'm happy pedalling everywhere. Toph is too. And all the beaches are down dirt tracks which seem to lead nowhere till you wander further down some rocks and find the coves. It must be like Oxford St here in August abut not in September. Brilliant. Love this place. Would happily come off season, just to hunker down and feel isolated - on a couple of days we can't take the ferry out of here anyway and it doesn't even look that bad in the distance but clearly it is. To be in Europe and be cut off/far away sounds great to me.

You do have to track down the right restaurants though. Not that I can blame the locals for trying to make money in the short window of holidaymakers visiting but it goes against my religion to pay €15 for some basic spaghetti with some sauce especially if it's fish sauce and we're in the Med!

However, I don't think I'll ever eat tuna ever again after visiting the splendidly restored old tonnara of the Florio family and watching old reels of tuna catches. Thank god they're in b/w. In colour I'd have had to run away fast. Such great fish. No way they don't have some kind of brain like their dolphin cousins. Ok, you'd say pretty stupid not to have worked out that every year when they moved around following the same pattern, they'd be intercepted by the fishermen and clubbed to death. But that migration patter had probably been there for thousands of years and until a couple of hundred years ago the tuna were probably largely left alone, or at least until the invention of proper canning methods. After that... gone. Massacred. So yes, I may only be one person but if I don't eat tuna neither does Toph so maybe in a few years of not eating tuna we'll have spared one creature? Who knows. Toph is trying to persuade me that if I do this with tuna I'd have to extend to swordfish and so on. Not ready to banish all fish yet.


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