Photo by Rosemarie Vertullo "In a charming mountain village of Eze near Monaco. Population is 16 although tourists at any time are in the thousands. Earle was walking through an alley and I snapped that shot. I thought it was beautiful."
I’ve been enjoying my time immensely painting my new life canvas since my last official day of work four months ago.
My partner Earle and I went on a vacation to France in mid-May, and it was glorious. We toured Paris, many beautiful cities in Provence as well as Monaco for 17 days, and we couldn’t get enough. It was so great NOT having to check with the office or constantly check my iPhone for urgent email. For the first time in my adult life, when I returned home, I didn’t have to go back to work the next day or for that matter for the foreseeable future! It was an unbelievable feeling of relaxation. I didn't even unpack for an entire week – no rushing to the dry cleaners or to get the laundry done -- and I had no guilt. Jet lag was actually a pleasurable experience! We went away on vacation and came home to yet another vacation.
Our summer has been full of activities – lots of socializing with relatives and friends – brunches, lunches, dinners, and a few trips to beautiful nearby Healdsburg. In addition, we attended two Metropolitan Opera HD performances at our local theater, “Twelfth Night” at Shakespeare in the Park in our hometown of Napa, several lecture series, helped out at my grandchildren’s annual swim team marathon, pet-sat for my cute grand-dog, Henry, while my grandchildren vacationed at the beach, got massages, manicures, pedicures, and more! In short...I’m having the time of my life!
I am SO looking forward to rekindling my interest in photography. I love it, and I always find myself mentally composing a photograph of whatever I see. When I look at a person’s face, I want to frame it in ambient light. When I go for a walk or a bike ride, look at beautiful scenery, get close to a flower or a leaf, I see in my mind’s eye a wonderful photo. I got some fantastic shots with my cell phone camera while we were in France, and I'm sure I can take remarkable photos if I use more professional equipment. My film camera is so old and I really need new digital equipment. It's so terrific that I now have the time to really educate myself about the type of camera I want to buy.
I have always been a good cook, but despite my heritage, I have never excelled at Italian cuisine. I always depended on my parents and my siblings to do it for me. But ... ah, now I have the time to explore my mom’s delicious recipes, which I know I will NEVER be able to duplicate, although I will do my best. Sadly, Mama, Papa, and Sister are departed, but I can still tap into my Brother’s brain for tips on how Mama cooked. You know, she never measured anything; her recipes consisted of “lists of ingredients,” and that’s all! She just went by “taste” and “aroma,” and it always turned out perfectly! Mama Theresa was the greatest Italian cook, by far!
Recently I made a new discovery – an incredible source of intellectual stimulation that's on my iPad – iTunes University. Here is a plethora of knowledge, and it's absolutely free! There are courses from academic institutions throughout the world – Harvard, Stanford, Yale, Oxford, to name a few. I have always valued knowledge, and this will give me an opportunity to explore areas I have always wanted to study. NOW I have the time to do it and best of all, I don’t have to take exams! I will always get an “A"!
I feel like an artist who has a free-wheeling attitude. Sure, I have some specifics in mind about what I want to tackle and learn, but basically, I want to take life as it comes. I’ll explore the pleasures I mentioned above, but more importantly, I want to discover new pleasures, spontaneously. I can't wait to see what life will bring. It is so great to be at the beginning of this whole new chapter.
Oh! And a really wonderful surprise – I received so much positive feedback on my first blog post that I hope to do more blog writing in the future!
Rosemarie Vertullo is a retired sales and marketing executive who lives in Napa with her partner of five years. She is a self-made woman who is incredibly proud of her life. She raised two sons as a single parent, during a time when there were few support systems for “spirited women,” and she managed to put herself through college. Rosemarie graduated with a BS in Biology from SUNY Stony Brook in 1978. She joined the pharmaceutical/medical industry as a sales representative and successfully climbed the corporate ladder eventually heading up sales forces for two companies.