|A fairy's door?|
None of this really survived the journey to Italy, apart from the fact that I had grown up, sort of ... The woods of Northern Europe fire the imagination in a different way to the bright sunshine of Italy.
The first time that springtime came around I asked how to say Catkins and Pussy willow in Italian, I was met with blank looks. I looked "catkins" up in the dictionary. All I could find was (Bot) amento, gattino.
Yesterday, however, my little granddaughter told me that the teacher was telling them a long story. A little bit every day. It was about a little barbagianni who was afraid of the dark. I looked into her dear, earnest little face as she told me the story, I felt my little folk stirring, unfurling their wings and opening their eyes.
Now that is a word that I really like in Italian, barbagianni. In English it is Barn Owl.
Barbagianni literally means Bearded little John.