Ah, yes. After an extremely tedious and tiring day, what better way to enjoy a quiet evening at home than by watching Under the Tuscan Sun, featuring Diane Lane? It’s amazing how happy this movie makes me. I laugh. I cry. I think, yes! Someday I will move to Italy and find happiness, love, and write the next great novel! I will stroll through the villages of Tuscany and find an amazing mansion for a reasonable price. Sure, there will be hard times. But I’ll look so good doing it all–in fact, I’ll buy a blow-dryer and do my hair. Then all the Italian men will come a runnin’!
I am a such a sucker for a good romance/coming-of-age tale. But it got me wondering…how realistic are any of these romances? Do children in Italy really run around throwing rose petals at people, as opposed to the sticks and stones American kids manage to hurl? It’s a little unsettling.
Josephine Cox, a popular British author, brings up an interesting point: Love stories may be instilling some unrealistic expectations in many of us. Here are some key arguments she poses in an article from The Daily Mail:
1) Generally, all the main characters of a love story are really good-looking. (Not the case in real life.)
2) Often enough, it’s love at first site. (For those who say they’ve never noticed someone on the metro and thought–if even for just a second–that this could be the one, you’re lying. And probably no fun at all.)
3) If it’s not love at first site, it’s a childhood friendship that has developed into much, much more.
4) The stories end when the two characters end up happily together. Forget the baby diapers, cottage cheese thighs, and “first gray hairs” that come later.
Still, at the end of all this I say that storytelling is just storytelling. If novels and films were about how Paul and Lauren met their sophomore year of college and got married after graduation, I would cry giant tears of boredom.
Under the Tuscan Sun probably made me think a little too much. But I am considering a future as a divorcee who decides to start over in Europe…I just hope I have Diane Lane’s waistline.