I’ve been stringing beads and charms of every shape and color on rubber cords for days. It has been my hobby since I was a child. It helps me concentrate on my thoughts, closing off the rest of the world. But today the mood is counterproductive. Summer showed up all of a sudden, placing a giant hairdryer in my garden. I have a dozen phone calls to manage and three kids jumping for the joy of finally being free from school.
Not even my beloved beads succeed in casting a mysterious spell to help me organize the flow of my thousand thoughts and give me the right energy. Anxiety is the worst side effect of this dispersion of energy.
But there’s a place in this little paradise with the power of giving back peace and beauty even to the troubled soul dwelling in me. It’s called Petra Segreta. It rises like a diamond stuck into granite rocks a few kilometers from San Pantaleo. It is the result of the vision of two people: Luigi and Rosella. He is a physician, she is an architect. Apparently against all logic, they decided to create a 5-star resort far from the sea. But you just need to cross the threshold to understand that they have won this difficult bet.Luigi welcomes me, smiling as he always does. He takes care of the guests managing the kitchen and when I ask him how can a successful physician give up everything to turn into a Chef, he smiles and says that all in all he is still taking care of people, offering them local genuine food.
“Come with me to do some grocery shopping!”
This sentence shows all his pride in the farm that lies next to the resort. Time seems to have taken a bow to the past; our first stop is the small dairy caveau where Daniele is preparing some cheese. The smell is strong and inebriating. Luigi explains some techniques and a little secret that discloses at the first tasting. Then we stop in the vegetable garden to pick some tomatoes and some zucchini. Our shopping ends with some eggs and a close encounter with Pasticcione, a beautiful horse whose name says it all. “Now recover your energy. See you at lunch”He shows me the entrance where Rosella comes and greets me, elegant and nice as always.
When I tell her how I was feeling these days and the derangement I was experiencing, I understand Luigi’s words and smiles when I was telling him that I was exhausted. Rosella leads me through a path that winds itself through a thick vegetation, where big awesome stones rise up to look after these ancestral places. Rosella explains that people draw significant benefits from this trail. Guided by her strong sensitivity I feel like I am recovering strength and peacefulness. Walking among grottos and rocks carved by the wind, I close my eyes and my imagination travels among ancient Shamans, propitiatory rites and powerful bonds with the forces of nature.
The trail is long and very hard. But when we reach the entrance of the resort I feel wrapped up and shaken. It’s difficult to express this feeling in words.
Rosella anticipates my question. “It’s ok, now take a rest and eat something. Luigi is waiting for you” The table is set and Luigi shows with pride his ravioli, prepared with ingredients from the farm. The
smell fills the room, but nothing could have prepared me for their taste.
I look around and see Rosella running away.
I believe in the power of suggestion, I believe that sometimes we are carried away by the charm of things and that we give them back the benefits of that magical illusion. But in the dish prepared by Luigi, in the path taken with Rosella there is something more. There is something I long to tell but leaves me speechless at the same time. There’s the beauty of a place that remains in my heart.
And will never leave you. There’s a physician who hanged up his whitecoat and there’s energy vibrating in the earth.
There’s Petra Segreta.