An Extra Virgin Film

It’s a very extra virgin film—it just finished yesterday.  A film can’t get more extra virgin than that.  You can check out the first minute here at www.goldenharvestfilm.org

A 6,000 year old love story

It’s been a long journey, but anything to do with olive trees is eternal.  It’s also our heart.  That I figured out from everyone else— discovered in all the poetry and literature.  That’s what makes olive oil and olive trees so powerful, eternity and love.

Meeting Under The Olive Trees – Poem by Natasa Bajic

There, where we no longer exist
There, I will plant olive trees
To weaken the storms of the upcoming centuries
To protect the dreams of future dwellers
To guard the peace of sleeping martyrs
To satisfy the hunger of wild beasts
There, where the meaning unexpectedly ends
I will plant olive trees
For hope to win
And all the misfortunes I will convert
Into a million tiny olive branches
So Gods will be forgiven
So people will be forgiven

There, where no one exists any more
For all my ancestors
Olives
Instead of headstones
Will stand
They live for a thousand years
They became my religion
While I waited for you
To come to me yet again
To talk with me
Under the olive trees.

Tetralogy of our origins
Said little
Genealogical tree hurt
Our unborn children…
And while our next encounter
Nourishes
My vision of the olive trees
I dream ancestors
I dream offspring
Life is a big waiting room
Cards are dealt every seventh year
When you come back to me under the olive trees
Another you and another me
A new life and a new hope
Many new olive trees
Which are our prayers now
Will be our magic
Will be our destiny.

Translated from Serbian by Ivana Jeremić – Robinson

 

The Golden Harvest Time

It’s my favorite season of the year—olive harvest season in the Mediterranean.   My friends let me know how bountiful they expect it to be this year in their area (drought hasn’t been

A First Batch of Olives

A First Batch of Olives

very helpful in much of the region) and whether they’ve started to pick the trees yet or if they have a few weeks to go.

Some of these friends are new in my life, part of the past year I spent researching olive oil before we started filming “The Golden Harvest” (More updates on that soon)

I haven’t met all the 600 plus varieties of olives out there (although I’ve met a scientist in Cordoba who is attempting to collect them all, after studying olives for 40 years). And I haven’t met all the thousands and thousands of people who somehow make their living from olive oil –whose families have perhaps done so for millennia. But each person teaches me something new.

There are some things you clearly remember hearing about for the first time—bungee jumping, libraries, sex, sushi. Then there are things you’ve known since your mom massaged your baby feet with olive oil, things like whatever is for dinner, it probably tastes better with a drizzle of oil. I can’t remember when I didn’t know that or that a shot of olive oil in the morning is the key to longevity, according to all relatives over 65-years old.

Some Olives in Madrid

Some Olives in Madrid

Outside the kitchen, it becomes, in addition to the favorite bathing soap, the answer to most household problems. Maybe some of the reasons are a little old fashioned, like acting as a sealant for your pyramidal crypt, or fuel to light a lamp, but the list just seems to evolve and grow. Here’s a few that I hear a lot.

  1. Hair Conditioner: Half an hour to an hour on the hair, wrapped in a shower cap. Bonus—add in a couple of spoonfuls of yogurt. Messier but magical.
  2. Make Up Remover: I don’t wear eye make-up often because I’m highly unskilled with kohl pencils, and I end up looking more like ghost than a beauty queen. But any disastrous results are quickly wiped away with a cotton swab soaked in olive oil. No fear, no smear.
  3. Facial moisturizer and exfoliator: Put on face at night and wake up with skin like a baby.
  4. Speaking of babies, it works as a diaper rash alleviator. But in moderation, because of the above mentioned exfoliating properties.
  5. Acne killer: particularly when mixed with rosehip oil and dabbed on the spot.
  6. Furniture polish: when mixed with a little lemon juice, it makes a pledge to keep your furniture shiny.
  7. Conditioner for leather shoes and furniture: But I’ve also heard to proceed with moderation on this one as too much can result in oil spots.
  8. Fix a squeaky hinge—without the nasty WD smell. Same goes for zippers.
  9. Relieve joint pain and arthritis because of its anti-inflammatory properties. Said properties also combat hemorrhoids (one of those things people whisper about, so I buried it in with another tip, although I think if we ate more olive oil, we’d have less hemorrhoids in the world).
  10. Ease Depression: There’s too much of this going around and the pharmaceutical companies are making a fortune on drugs that can also sometimes have horrific side effects. Olive oil has no side effects –in fact, as part of a balance diet, it can even help you maintain a good weight. *

*These are all things I’ve been told or know from experience—I’m not a doctor! But we’re meeting an amazing one in Athens in “The Golden Harvest.” Stay tuned.