Only a few, until entering this very passage, realized why Jeanette, LouLou and I chose July 23rd for the Mr. Haute Coiffure book launch. You see dear friends, July 23rd is my heavenly mother’s birthdate, Jean would have still been carrying on making her worldly appearance ninety-two years today.

I might be dating myself here, however, with justifiable cause regarding famiglia di Schiavo’s precise whereabouts upon Mr. Haute Coiffure’s global release. In those immortal words of the Beastie Boys, it cannot be said any more eloquently than rhym’n Mike D’s punchy New York accent shouting, “you gotta fight for your right to party.”

Last summer while visiting Lampedusa, Jeanette clicked that photo of me which appears on my press release, new website and book’s inside back cover. LouLou, our then few inches shorter, eleven-year-old daughter played artistic director, emphatically asserting, with glowing confidence, this was an image her poppi should project himself as in Mr. Haute Coiffure. That clay applied on my face (said to have healing properties) was powder personally dug from the cliffs surrounding Cala Creta on Lampedusa; I’ve got real live scars as proof scaling barefoot is indeed a foolish act.

Traveling to this Sicilian island from America is no easy feat either, unless you’re Silvio Berlusconi; although, if he traveled from California on his private jet, he’d also suffer what most of us do after hurling ourselves halfway around the planet.

Lampadusa’s caramel to black lava rock juts up from the pristine Mediterranean Sea, smack-dab between Malta and Tunisia. Fortune has us a year later once again freediving among tranquil underwater creatures upon 9 something’s toasty sun — lunching al fresco, eating everything that defines Sicilia’s culinary offering: scratch made appetizers, caponata, sfincione, pasta al dente, maybe grilled fish, other days steamed mussels, finishing with lemon granita or cassatelle, possibly both — afterward drifting toward silence ‘til 3 — corresponding until 5:30 — later picking on light snacks — followed by chitter-chatter, passing time over gin rummy before being lulled into another evening’s slumber — still sensing our morning swims gentle sway.

Ebook and paperback available now


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