We arrived in Tuscany during the olive harvest or raccolta. Italy is second in the world, after Spain, in olive oil production. I have always loved olive oil for cooking and dipping but since moving to Italy, it is now essential in our “gypsy” household.
We use olive oil exclusively as moisturizer, make-up remover and to erase art supplies from little hands. We use a few drops of olive oil in the tub with lavender oil to calm eczema. Ron joked last week, when our five-year old, Bianca, got gum stuck in her hair, that we should use olive oil to get it out. It worked! We massaged it into the sticky mess and the gum separated from the hair! It takes price tag adhesive off of glass, it cleans and oils cast iron, it repairs scratches on leather furniture and works to revive wood.
The olive tree has both a sentimental and religious significance to all nations and all religions. When an olive tree is cut down, new life will grow back from the roots. The gnarled trunks carry a wisdom I have only just begun to understand. If you have ever seen the luminescent grassy goodness in new oil and the way that it ages into liquid gold, you know exactly what I mean.