Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Most August

The August sun refuses to set here in Roma, it's 7:55pm, dinner is over and this is the view:
The lights just came on here at the outdoor seating of the restaurant. As far as I can tell it still looks like 4:30 in the afternoon.

Perhaps this summer evening is just attempting to keep pace with its name sake, Augustus Caesar the first emperor of Rome. Young Octavius whose great uncle Gaius Julius Caesar lifted himself so far above his peers that he ripped the republic apart and gave birth to the spectacular Roman Empire, may have struggled his whole life to eclipse his adopted father. Gaius Julius Caesar who's name gives us the month July, was followed on the path to history by Octavius, who became Gaius Julius Caesar Divi Filus (son of a god if my suspect historical fiction education can be trusted) after Ceasar's assassination. He then later emerged from a titanic struggle for power as the first emperor of Rome, Augustus.

August follows July like Octavius followed Gaius. The summer evening seems to powerfully hold sway over this day as night seemingly gives way to the irresistible power of an August afternoon.

For me sitting here in the beauty of an unrelenting and yet soon to be bested August evening holds a certain perspective. Part of that perspective may come directly from the mouth of the half bottle of Merlot that came with dinner. 375ml of Italy's low to mid level finest. To me it seems borderline awesome, my palette could probably use some work.

Perspective: The earth has been here for an age, people have been scrapping it out for thousands of years and my life is just a vino drop in the ocean of red grape juice. Parts of it have been challenging, the majority has been spectacular. Many have suffered loss and disaster. Here in this city pain has been mixed with delight for thousands of years.

The challenge is to strive like the August (or July) sun to shine while you can and maybe light your corner of the world for a while.


  1. Beautiful. Loving your history and your wisdom. Enjoy tucking into the Roman fare while you can as your travels will soon present you with myriad culinary options nothing like the dishes you're eating now. Please also consume at least one gelato per day. YUM!!!

  2. I must confess my eyes glazed over just a little bit during the ancient Roman history references. However... what is the point of going somewhere really old if you don't let the significance and perspective rise from those old stones to greet you through the glass of the merlot bottle. It is lovely to hear from you. Lots of love to your travels

  3. Well said Julie - I reckon I got about 75% of the references ... and I studied classical Rome at Uni! My second thought was "more vino every time you write a post Mike!!". Keep having fun big guy, and let us know how your adventures are going. We will be reading it even if it's in Latin.

  4. It's wonderful how travel makes history stick isn't it...or maybe it's the wine. Salute!!