It’s Italian and according to Wiktionary it means “sweet doing nothing” = “Delicious idleness”.
In the movie Eat, Pray, Love its described as the sweetness of doing nothing.
This morning after a walk and the dogs’ breakfast, this “little” puppy have been on speed, doing pretty much everything he’s not supposed to. Very puppy-like, in other words. Sometimes, just like with us humans and especially kids, when a puppy is tired beyond the need of sleep there’s no end to the mischievousness, playing, barking and what have you.
I’ve been cool about it, there’s no need to do anything as long as the dog and us around him are safe. He’s been chewing on an old basket ball, trying to play with a not-at-all-interested-cat, wrestling with the older dog, barking at… who knows what, wanting to cuddle, almost falling asleep, barking, chewing, wrestling, looking for other things to chew or eat… and finally, after three hours of being active, he was ready to rest. Almost. And then really, sleeping.
Why I find this so interesting is that I recognize myself in this behavior. When I need to rest or sleep but keep myself busy with things like a child not wanting to go to bed. As kids we usually don’t want to miss out on anything, and as grown ups… we think we need to do things or be awake and alert because…? Well, we all have our reasons and explanations. Personally I’ve become far better at Dolce far niente lately and love those days or hours. This is the first real day of Dolce far niente since arriving in Sweden almost three weeks ago. It’s wonderful!
What I usually say is that animals (when they’re not speed-puppies) are great to help us remember to do what we want/need the most. If a dog/cat/horse needs to rest, they do. Or eat, go pee, yawn, stretch, run, jump, shout… basically whatever.
Anders? He’s sleeping. And it’s almost noon.
Dolce far niente! // Wivan