Archive for the ‘San Francisco’ Category

Every single path we take in life has its price to pay. Fulfilling my dream comes at the expense of living far away from my son.

IMG_2181Today I especially felt the sting of that choice as I accompanied Andrew to the train station. I decided not to see him off at the airport because he absolutely hates it when I make public displays of emotion.

Honestly, I should have earned an Academy Award for this morning’s subtle and realistic performance as the upbeat and nonchalant Mom…smiling as I gave him a big hug, two kisses on the cheek (Italian style) and waved goodbye through the train window. I waited until I was on the Metro back home to burst into tears.

Andrew arrived in Rome in January to do a semester of university study.  This once shy, introverted child had become a confident, independent and adventurous man.  It’s astonishing how quickly he immersed himself into the experience: A year ago he was asking me, “How do you say “fork” in Italian?” and now I’m asking him, “Should I use the imperfect or simple past in this situation?”  I admit it does bug me a little when he orders the dinner in a restaurant to avoid the embarrassment of his mother (who’s been studying the language for six-something years) mispronouncing menu items.  I suppose I should be used to it by now – he’s been smarter than me since the third grade. 

We spent his last day in Italy quietly walking around Rome. I could tell he was sad too, but he claimed he was just tired. I know he’s ready to return to his life in San Francisco and resume his studies, earn his degree, begin a career and get on with building the life he wants for himself. I want that for him too, but I will miss my Amore di Mamma more than I can say.

by Toni DeBella


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Perfectly warm, sunny weather; crystal-clear blue skies with not a cloud in sight; fighter pilots creating sonic booms in shiny blue and gold jets above the Golden Gate Bridge…It’s Fleet Week, baby!

I think the Blue Angels are the rock stars of the skies.  That navy pilot who flew the United Airlines jumbo jet at a dangerously low altitude over the San Francisco Bay has nerves of steel.  

If the Blue Angels soaring into the wild blue yonder at the speed of sound doesn’t make you jump up and down and squeal like a little girl, then there’s something seriously wrong with you!  Good day. Sunshine. Jets.


by Toni DeBella

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Leaving San Francisco isn’t going to be easy.  I love this city and will miss everything about it.  I remember the first day I moved here.  I stepped out onto the stoop of my apartment building, looked around and decided there was nowhere in the world I would rather be…then I found Orvieto. Italy.  In the next three months I am going to enjoy every single minute of my life here, appreciate all the things San Francisco and Marin County have to offer, and say good-bye with no regrets…

….Goodbye deYoung Museum.

August 4, 2012: Jean Paul Gaultier at the deYoung Museum, Golden Gate Park

I exited the Jean Paul Gaultier Exhibition at the DeYoung Museum today flabbergasted.   I am shattered by Gaultier’s genius.  I’ve never seen clothes so beautiful, expressions so unfiltered, gowns so outrageously sublime, outfits so over-the-top delightful.   Each one was lovely and funny and smart and more incredible than the next.  His masterpieces are astonishing.  I wonder if Jean Paul Gaultier knows how brilliant he is?  I think so.

Tartan Man


Madonna and his iconic bustier

by Toni DeBella

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