b'In spite of his worries, he kept thinking, Life is beautiful. A room with a view at their favorite pensione, some time to think, and dinner with friends. Maybe even a midnight walk along the beach. Oh yes, life is beautiful!e Topolino pulled in front of the old building. ey called it a pensione but it was really a little shack on the beach.A fi sherman and his family lived on the fi rst fl oor and they rented a couple of rooms upstairs. One special room had a small balcony that opened to the beach below. It might not have been much, but to these two young lovers it was a slice of paradise.e landlady ushered them to the room and gave them the keys. Just like you asked, signora, she said to his wife. I putthe yellow tulips on the vase right by the balcony. Here is a carafe of red wine our family made. It will keep you warm at night. And with that she exited the room. He threw the balcony doors open and there before him was that beautiful vista he remembered. e waves lapping against the hardened sands of the beach made the most beautiful and relaxing sound. He motioned her over and together they looked at the sunset while sipping their glasses of wine. He held her close, and his eyes told her,I love you.e sun slowly disappeared behind the sea, with an orange glow that lingered.Vincenzo, she said softly, feel this! Her hand took his and moved it slowly over her belly. Not a word was exchanged, just a look. A very telling look. Massimiliana, he whispered. She placed her fi ngers over his lips and then they kissed, while the warm breeze from the sea stole away their worries. is is how my mother told my father I was about to come into their life.at night they shared their news with their good friends. e waiter took their picture while they were making a happytoast to the future. at is the same picture you now see on the cover of this book. My parents are the last two people on the right and left.My mother gave me this picture a few years back. With a wink she said, I guess this was your destiny. Always around a table fi lled with food and fi ne wine, surrounded by family, friends, stories and laughter. Even then, while I was pregnant with you, I could hear you say Mamma, Mangiamo! I did not respond, but I knew she was right.My Mother, my Father, and meNicolino'