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  • Summer begins when "Candlemas” arrives!
26 JUNE 2017

Summer begins when "Candlemas” arrives!

by Gianluca Isaia

“quann vene ‘a Candelora estate arint e viene afore”, (summer begins when "Candlemas" arrives)

Summer has returned, bringing with it a scorching blaze of heat. Everyone knows it is difficult to be impeccable and stay cool on long summer days and torrid evenings. It's difficult but – trust us – it's not impossible.

After all, in Napoli they say “quann vene ‘a Candelora estate arint e viene afore” (summer begins when "Candlemas" arrives), alluding with a certain baroque Neapolitan exaggeration to many months of good weather with initially pleasantly warm and later scorching temperatures that luck has given us through various seasons. Cotton fabrics in different weights, hemp and linen in different weaves and, last but not least, proverbial cool wool help us overcome the onslaught of summer heat.

It is often a sort of exact science combined with casual suggestions, discoveries and personal and empirical solutions. I believe that a linen shirt, piqué polo shirt and linen or cool wool suit are extremely useful means for fighting the torrid heat. And unlike what happens in the USA or Germany, due to Italian taste and that casual indifference that we love and that comes natural to us, the wrinkles that appear on a linen suit when worn are a further sophisticated proof of nonchalant elegance.

Personally, and it has become a sort of emblematic habit, I enjoy wearing my canonical coral red leather flip flops even with a formal suit and wherever I am in the world. They keep me happy and unfailingly give me the illusion of being in my beloved Capri. If you want to follow this philosophy, my only advice is to have perfectly manicured feet. There are countless remedies for fighting summer humidity, even without arriving at the maximum sophistication of the Sicilian aristocrats of centuries past who, with the arrival of the humid, heavy African wind that people thought could even trigger insanity, would close themselves in secret "sirocco rooms" dug out of the foundations of their urban palazzos or country manors and silently chew on miraculous coral branches as a magic remedy. In more modern times, a Neapolitan prince, who was just as original, had his clothes stored in a special refrigerator created in his homes, coolly unconcerned about facing terrible rheumatic afflictions.