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As an adult I see that I have come full circle. I’ve lived, suffered, enjoyed and learned a lot. My life with a Chinese-American husband has been full of joy and commotion. Our New York home never lacked thought-provoking cultural-shocks: we nonchalantly ate Chinese and Italian food during the same meal, a good plate of pasta al pomodoro together with the delicious domiao, the exotic pea-shoots from Chinatown.

We trusted equally our Shanghai acupuncturist (with her needles and herbal concoctions) and the high-tech approach of our Western doctors to oversee the family’s health.

The American days have now morphed into a new milder era, back to Italy where I had started my peripatetic life around the world. At the beginning of 2020 my husband and I moved to Todi, in Umbria. Our house sits on top of a hill overlooking the Tiber valley, surrounded by olive trees and an endless ocean of undulating green fields. Not for nothing Umbria’s moniker is “The Green Heart of Italy!” Bye bye skyscrapers and subway trains, traffic and noise, arrivederci to chic boutiques and sophisticated restaurants. Ben arrivati to the simple joys of our new country life: cats, a vegetable garden and the best, purest ingredients offered at the weekly markets or at the local farmers. Eggs, cheese, vegetables, fruit, meat, everything follows the principles of organic sustainability. My beloved Todi never ceases to stun us every time we drive up to its medieval squares and narrow streets, with its great trattorias and small stores. It’s a different kind of life; my husband has become fluent in Italian, delighted to drive his tiny Fiat Panda up and down the Umbrian hills and to be able to converse with the shop owners. And I? well, I’m back to my roots. The woman I am today is the compendium of all I have learned and experienced during my childhood and adult years.

I’m grateful. 

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