There are places you feel connected to even before you understand why. This is the story of one such place.
Today, I live and work in Milan, but the corner of north central Italy where I grew up—a tiny village in the Marche region called Borgo Pace (literally ‘borough of peace’)—is a stone’s throw from the Tuscan border, and that’s how I came to exist. My father’s family, the Dinis, settled on this side of the mountains from the Lucca region, who knows how many generations ago. My mother’s family, the Franceschi, were thought to be the last remaining relatives of Piero di Benedetto de’ Franceschi— also known as Piero della Francesca—and never moved from the painter’s Tuscan neighbourhood on the other side of the mountains. Mum and dad would have remained strangers had it not been for this shared border. Back in the 1950s, a young teacher was sent on her first assignment to the most remote parish in her region; for my mother, nothing was more remote than the last Tuscan outpost just upriver from the border, a short hike from my paternal grandmother’s grocery shop where she bought food—and found a husband. They had my older brothers, then, me.
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WITH HELP FROM RSR TUSCAN JAGUAR DEVOTEE LUCA DEVELOPED HIS IDEA OF THE PERFECT XK-R. THEN HE SOUGHT THE HELP OF FORMER WORKS XK-R TEAM ROCKET SPORTS RACING!
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“I saw a butterfly,” my mother said with a shy smile. It was the first time I’d seen her smile since my father’s death the week before. After a seven-year period of steadily declining health, he’d passed away in his bed at home, surrounded by his wife and three daughters. It was a peaceful end to his suffering, but saying goodbye was still difficult. We all missed him terribly. Especially Mami.
It was a sunny October day. My husband, Anthony, and I sat with our three kids—Ella, seven; Luca, five; and Zoe, two—as they drew with sidewalk chalk in the driveway. The whole family was enjoying the last bit of nice weather before the winter. Everything felt warm and peaceful.
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