Zia Maralette was molto veccio (old).
Catalina tried to interpret the thousand intricate lines upon her pearly face.
They resembled a road map, owning all the details of her choices, all traces of her breath.
As if she had lived once and then over again.
But like the wind behind the waves, Zia Maralette exuded all the life of the seven seas,
and Catalina thought of her as a word more than beautiful.
Proprietor of three casas, she was a wealthy woman, as to match any male in the region.
Her Chambers were adorned with purple satin silk that hung in sashes from the ceeling, rolling into ribbons over a four poster bed with silver welded corners. Her hallways had all the height of the sky.
On each of her fingers, a ring with a different gemstone. Aquamarine (seawater jewel), Stella Zaffiro (Star Saphire), Sphene (Canary colored gem),and tsavorite (rich growing green).
The last the shape of the moon in the night sky,
filled with a million rosso rubini (red ruby’s).
Zia Maralette was a woman of Splendid Grandeur.
After all her dreams, and all her wishes for Murano, Catalina knew she did not belong here.
In Friuli this would not be. In Fruili, women were secondario. They were casalinga (homemaker), and before they were either, they were schiavi to their brothers and to their fathers.
They had no place for greeting officials and associates of the ministers, for throwing bountiful banquets and embellished festivities.
For this was Zia Maralette’s life, and Catalina could hardly believe they were related.
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