Today Nicoletta and I are officially on a day off from cooking, as it is our one year Italian wedding anniversary. It was a year ago that we were in the countryside of a little town east of Rome called Agosta, Italy. We were fortunate to have two weddings, because nobody from Italy could come. We decided along with Nicoletta's parents to have a celebration there. In Edmonton we had a modern classic informal wedding at the AGA, Alberta Art Gallery, so when it came to planning the Italian wedding Nicoletta was set in having a rustic country wedding.
Months of planning and finding outfits and food decisions, flowers, venues etc, the date was set, the venue a wonderful mountain top restaurant and banquet facility run by Nicoletta's cousins, the outfits classic country. The food a plethora of Italian appetizers and many coarses of traditional pastas meats and vegetables. Flowers by a local florist in the town of Agosta and many local wild flowers available just what Nicoletta and I wanted.
The day arrives Nicoletta and I very excited and yet nervous because we had so much to do. We were on our way down from the town along a winding road and out of the corner of my eye I see this cat sitting on the side of the road a bit shaky. Nicoletta immediately says stop the car we get out to find that the cat had been struck by a car or something and had been badly hurt, off to a local vet in a town nearby to find out that there was not much that could be done so we set up a house nearby where we found her out of the roadways with some water and food, we also told some locals about her and to make sure they check on her. Now reality sets in, we have to get going so much to do, flowers, jars of beautiful jams homemade by Franco, Nicoletta's dad, to bring to the banquet facility, decorate the hall, and most importantly drop Nicoletta off to the beauty salon for hair and make up.
I am back at our place in Agosta trimming hedges and decorating the gardens, with Nicoletta's uncle and aunt, as guests will first stop there to meet us with lots of hugs and love.
The stage is set, I am dressed hat on the gardens beautiful with wheel barrel full of wild flowers and hand painted sign to direct our guests, grass cut hedges trimming to a tee. I pick up my wife to be at the hair salon and am floored with emotion and grace as I see her coming toward the car in all her beauty and country elegance. We make our entrance to the gardens and so many hugs and kisses so many that I am overcome with emotion at the presence of all these beautiful people. Small appetizers served with some aperitivo drinks.
We all go up the mountain and walk down a set of stairs to the setting of our wedding ceremony, the backdrop an amazing fountain and water fall and the Mayor of the town heading the festivities. Appetizers outdoor, flowing to the likes of focaccia, homemade cheeses, frittata, cured meets, olives etc. The dinner indoor, an abundantly flowing ensemble of pastas, meats, vegetables, oh by the way dinner lasted about 2 hours. Nicoletta's father sang us a beautiful Italian song which made me tear up a bit, I also sang and played guitar to Nicoletta. A song her and I love so much from the movie August Rush called "This Time" By Johnathan Reese Meyers. My favorite part came next, the dancing, the stars my second cousins dancing up a storm and line dancing and as I look around I see the beauty of this place the lights swaggered on the old wood beams, a table with the jam jars topped with burlap and beautiful watercolor paintings that Nicoletta hand painted for each family to have. Did I tell you I think Nicoletta is very talented, well she is, just thought I would mention that. The finale of the evening a disco set up on the mountain side with the bass pumping and people dancing, fireworks launching in the night sky lighting up the valley me holding Nicoletta in my arms and just in total gratitude of this experience. So there you have it, maybe a bit long winded, but I always have so much I want to say.
Thank you to all the beautiful people that came to celebrate with us sending lots of hugs your way, to Marco and Elizabetta and the staff at the Ristorante da Anna thank you sooo much, to the musicians Marco and Dario for the wonderful music, to the florist for bringing our vision to life, to our photographer and good friend Nadia, to Andrea and Francesca for being the witnesses of our union, to the Mayor of Agosta Gianfranco for heading our cerimony, and to Franco and Tonina, for all your hard work, support and understanding, and beautiful Daughter. Most of all thank you to You Nicoletta for this great journey we are on.
P.S. About the injured cat, we had gone several times to check on her but she was not there. One day I thought I saw her walking in between two houses, I hope so you would not miss her she would have a bit of a crooked jaw. I am sure she is fine we did our best.
When I am not cooking, I enjoy playing musical instruments, singing, writing. I have learned over the years to live in gratitude and enjoy the moment.