At times its best to opt for a cappuccino, and leave the book left closed on the shelf where it has been found. Let us take into account what happened to myself in two separate, and distinct occasions. Walking, in a humble coffee shop in Rome one day, a long while back, there it was, a teal blue book on a shelf. The shelf, where a sign stated that “the books are free to good home”, obviously written in the Italian not using the same form of words, had many reads that awaited for their possibility to be taken, and to then be read like any decent book should. Despite feeling genuinely enticed to choose the book. I decided to stick to what I was doing, by asking
“Buongiorno, voreei un cappuccino.” to the waiter who served me.
A quickside note:
How to order a Cappuccino in Italiano 101:
The equivalent phrase of
“Buongiorno, vorrei un cappuccino.”
is “Goodmorning, I would like a cappuccino.”
A cappuccino is an long expresso shot, diluted by warm, steamed, milk foam. They are common to find, and available in every normal bar throughout Italy. You will be asked if you would like some cocoa powder, and/or cannella sprinkled on top.
So be not suprised after ordering a cup, if the server will ask politely:
“Vuole un po’ di cacao?”; it is rare that they will ask if you want cinnamon too. So remember, to keep that in mind. Either way, you know the cappuccino is well made if they are able to make a cocao heart right on top of the milk foam. Which I adore! ❤
The Unbearable Lightness of Being written by Milan Kundera.
The second encounter with the same book was in another unpretentious coffee shop near Milan. In need of what I personally consider to be my beloved elixir, this time as I entered, saying “Buonasera.” my attention, as it would habitually do. Begain wandering about, guided by the sight of the “free used book” shelf in that coffee shop. A teal book, the same novel of the one of about a year ago was there, laying faced down. Left to be read for any curious soul like myself. Observing the book within the palm of my hand, there I instantly was able to remember to have seen that book before, so this time I decided to give the book a chance, taking it home with me.
The Unbearable Lightness of Being is an novel written in 1984 by the naturalized French, Czech author of the name Milan Kundera. Based on four characters, and a dog of the name Karenin. The canine’s name, inspired by Tolstoy’s Anna Karenina, of course, was used to represent a profound overall meaning. Two men, and two women, are the subjects in which Kundera’s philosophical point of views where speculated on. Bringing up matters in relation to various schools of thought, it was undeniable that he had a message to give. As the characters shared a common thread of trying to understand their freedom through their sexuality, the book goes through a series of events in which the characters grasped on each other, untruthfully with themselfves, and their actions in a consistent search of a “lightness of being”. Struggling, within their self limitations, and making choices based on some sort of personal need to escape. The Soviet occupation of Prague, in that famous year of 1968 obviously could not be the most bearable of situations. Being a painful experience for anyone. Reading the book, I found it to be quite un-enjoyable for myself personally, by the heaviness of the stories. While each persona played the “perfect role” representing the artsy, intellectual of that time, looking at it from the contemporary world’s perspective it felt rather a cliché. While I did not have a character that I liked. I did somewhat admired Tereza, for being the sweet, fotographer she was. Doing photojournalisim durring the Occupation of Prague, Tereza must have been strong hearted. Making me comprend that she had much strength in tolerating the “imperfect” world around her.
That being said, despite that I will never read this wonderful novel again. I will take note what it has taught me. Which are the following; three major points, be truthful with yourself, be respectful, and be happy with wonderful cappuccino! ❤
(Scheda del mio Libro: L’insostenibile leggerezza dell’essere, Milan Kundera, Adelfi, 1985)