In my childhood dreams I would move on my own before my thirtieth birthday with a caring and beautiful husband who would resemble my father in every aspect. He would be able to build a shelf, hang a picture on the wall, fix the broken heating right when it’s snowing outside and bring a large and heavy basket of wood logs to light the fireplace when it rains. I know, I had pretty conformist dreams to be a child in the Eighties…
I used to dream a house in the countryside, because this is an essential part to me: I have always seen my life in a place surrounded by nature, I have never bothered coming back home with muddy shoes – maybe my mum did, since she had to clean … – or drive somewhere to buy bread or butter, as here in my tiny village you can just buy eggs from the farmer.
In a few weeks I will take the plunge. After my life changed one year ago – a new job and a new life project – this year it’s time to move. Though, since I’m Italian, a mummy’s girl, fond of countryside and a single lady, I won’t come on in leaps and bounds and move very far, let’s say I’ll make a dozen steps, those between my parents’ house and the entrance to my future apartment. Same view, same air, same lime trees that fill the air of a honey fragrance during summer, same light for my photos and same street number. But it will be my own apartment.
I’ll be completely all by myself. On one side I am excited, just imagine waking up in the morning under a fluffy duvet, getting up and walking around the house in silence with my anti-skid socks, working in the kitchen and not worrying about the mess, because I will slowly clean up everything later… thanks to the second-hand dishwasher I inherited.
On the other hand it is all new, all huge, all extremely expensive, nothing that can be shared cost-wise, like I buy the sofa you buy the bookshelves. So since it is not shared with anyone, I decided to buy the oven and the hob, ‘cause it is fine to redecorate the house with what I find, but the oven… oh I want it good, functional and possibly with a good design. If you ask me, it is already the attraction of the house, there are guided tours if you’re interested. With the same ticket it is also included the breathtaking view that you can enjoy from the bathroom window, my friends can testify that it is worth the cost of the ticket…
From my fantasies as a child it remains the countryside, and luckily my father. In the absence of the imaginary husband of my conformist dreams, he did his very best for me: saw here, brick up there, do a chase, put a tube… To make the kitchen tailor-made for me, for my job, for my cooking classes and for the boxes of moulds and pots that I keep under the bed now, he will make the furniture that is missing, trying to meet my dream of a shabby chic white wood furnished house. So yes, I can paint in white the old cupboard of your grandmother, but just forget I will paint the antique wardrobe. We must reach a compromise, uh?
Today is the day. I will make a pilgrimage to Ikea, where I hope to find those few elements that will make the house my house. I cannot afford a new sofa, but I definitely want to buy a pretty small plant in an old looking enamel pot to be nicely arranged on a shelf that soon will be there. Who knows if they sell the husband of my childhood dreams in the DIY department. I just hope he will be sold with instructions written in Italian.
In my dreams as a little girl, in winter I would sip a hot chocolate wrapped in a Scottish plaid (got it) comfortably sitting on the sofa (missing) next to the fireplace (got it). And as for the chocolate, luckily this can be done with a very little expense, and since I am already doing the moving rehearsals, this is what I made a few days ago.
The hot chocolate can be done in so many ways… I made this to fix an instant chocolate craving just by dissolving a big cube of dark chocolate into a pot with a some milk over low heat, stirring with a whisk until it becomes as thick as I like. You serve it with a spoonful of whipped cream and some shaved dark chocolate, but you can omit the whipped cream and enjoy it as it is, for a more intense flavour. When I am crouched on my dream sofa I want a thick, dark, intense hot chocolate, perhaps with a pinch of nutmeg or a hint of grated orange peel, if we are close to Christmas. Which is the hot chocolate you would sip on the sofa next to the fireplace?
I will soon tell you more of the book, which is coming out in a few days, and if you are not bored of the chatter of a woman of the verge of a moving, I will let you know how it goes with furniture and other little things in the new house, but for the moment I wish you a weekend of fun, relax and good food, cheered by your favorite hot chocolate.