Monday, March 10, 2008

Was Leonardo da Vinci as crabby as all that?

I have just reviewed a work of historical fiction about Leonardo da Vinci and it really got me thinking. Was Leonardo as crabby as he was portrayed in the book? The book is told from the point of view of Leonardo's servant, a boy called Giacomo. I thought that Giacomo was a character which the author had made up but it turns out that he really existed. In his notebooks Leonardo complained about the boy many a time and oft but apparently one can tell that the painter was in fact very fond of Giacomo.


After reading about this I became determined to get a copy of the notebooks for myself. I really want to know what Leonardo was like. Reviews of the notebooks mention that one can get a very real sense of the inner Leonardo from his writings. I look forward to finding out if this is true or not.


This weekend was wonderful here in southern Oregon. The sun shone, it was warm, and the sky was an amazing blue. My family and I went and looked at a few houses - we are looking for a home of our own - and then we went to the local Chocolate Festival. The event was held in the lovely Ashland Springs Hotel and I don't think I have ever eaten so much chocolate in one go in my life! Milk chocolate candies infused with Lavena and with a caramel filling. Dark chocolate truffles with a raspberry center. Fresh pears dipped in warm melted chocolate. My seven year-old daughter, not surprisingly, began to feel a little sick after a while. My husband and I took a break from the chocolate at one point to taste some wine. It was perfect. Then we went back for a little more chocolate before we gave up eating, bought some treats, and walked home in the sun.
Ashland is definitely getting more tourist visitors these days. The warmer weather and the opening of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival has brought people here from all over. I cannot imagine what it is going to be like in the summer. We moved here in early September of last year so we have yet to see what Ashland is like in the spring and in the warmer months of May, June, July and August.

2 comments:

Padma Venkatraman said...

Chocolate festival! I enjoyed your description! I've stopped by every now and then to read your book reviews and finally plucked up the courage to say hello!

Marya Jansen-Gruber said...

I am delighted to hear from you and apologise for taking so long to get back to you. The chocolate festival was marvellous.I never thought that people could create so many delicious things in such neat and creative packages.
Do let me know what you think of the reviews and if there is anything you would like to see here please let me know.