Tales from my Italian adventure
It’s amazing the judgments we catch ourselves making. Who would have thought that a butcher in a small Tuscan town was actually a renaissance man?
After a long hike through the Tuscan countryside our group ended up at Antica Macelleria Cecchini in the village of Panzano for a pre-arranged dinner with Dario Cecchini. He’s a fifth generation butcher whose family has owned their shop for more than 250 years.
Dario shared with us his philosophy of treating all things with equal respect. He explained that we tend to assign higher value to certain cuts of meat which means that other ones are then considered less worthy. Dario challenged us to consider the inherent value in everything, to treat all the parts of the animal with the same degree of respect. To entertain the idea that simply because something might take more of our time and energy does not diminish its worth.
So we feasted on a meal made from the cow’s knees and shin – a meal that required several hours of preparation to create the tender dishes we enjoyed. Good conversation, fine wine, and to top it all off, at the end of the evening Dario jumped on the table and recited by heart a canto of Dante’s Inferno. Splendid in its original Italian, the impromptu performance moved everyone with its passion.
Food for thought
How many times do we go through our day voting that “this” is better than “that” or giving less time and attention to things that we have decided are less valuable?
How quickly do we dismiss this based on some pre-conceived idea?
How often do we limit ourselves because we have created a hierarchy for people and experiences?
How frequently in our super speed world do we choose quick and easy out of habit without weighing the option of slower?
Delicacies in the tuscan countryside
Dario left me some tasty food for thought. His challenge to treat everything with equal respect has remained with me like a satisfying meal. I find myself stopping to consider what hierarchy I’m unconsciously creating or which way I’m voting at any given time. You never know what delicacies you’ll find in the Tuscan countryside.