Thursday, December 11, 2003


Unless something really exciting or really terrible happens between now and the time we leave, this will be my last blog from Italy for a while! I told Art today that I am actually looking forward to being in the states…because I will be able to drive!!! And while I am driving, I won’t have to worry about being killed! Yes, I know there are deadly accidents every day in the US, but the drivers are just not as POSSESSED as the Italian drivers. And unless an American driver is drunk (which unfortunately still happens a lot) they usually stay in one lane, don’t tailgate, don’t flash their bright lights at you incessantly, and, for the most part, drive at a reasonable speed. At least in the US I know what I am dealing with.

Today the painter, Rolando arrived to finish the touchup painting and put up the baseboard in the kitchen. He had a lot of patching and sanding to do, so of course we had MORE DUST!!! I don’t think the dust will ever end! We left to get our hair cut at ten, and while we were in Marsciano, we ran into Elvio, the electrician. I know we’re geeks, but we really get a kick out of seeing someone we know on the street! We chatted with him for a few minutes, and he told us he would be by later with the switch plate covers. I ordered different colors for each room, of course, being the decorating diva that I am!

We met with Wendy to give her our old kitchen table. We needed to get rid of it since our stuff is arriving this afternoon. Amazingly, the tabletop and base fit more easily into her Fiat Punta than it did in our Ford station wagon. While we were with Wendy, we reminded her that we all needed to sign papers at the bank so that she can transfer money for us while we are in the states. We headed to the bank right after that, and Wendy will sign later this afternoon. Once that task was completed, we headed back home.

And not a moment too soon! It was now 12:50, and the delivery truck that was scheduled for AFTER 3:30 was pulling up to our house! Thank goodness we didn’t miss them! One of the two guys who delivered the stuff was so out of breath from going up and down the stairs, I wondered if he was a new hire. Surely he can’t do this all day, every day, and still be so out of shape. Art thinks he just smokes too much. Maybe that’s it. Anyway, our delivery consisted of one chair, one ottoman, (called a “pouf” in Italy!) an antique washstand, a wooden chest, and 46 assorted boxes of household goods, clothing, etc.

We spent the afternoon sorting through the boxes…many will just have to stay packed for now, because we don’t have anyplace to put the stuff. I have some of my Mom’s crystal, lots of ceramics and knick knacks that we have collected over the years, many, many picture albums, and lots and lots of framed pictures. For now, these boxes are stacked up in our bedroom, and the rest of the stuff is unpacked and waiting to be put away. I now have HANGERS!!!! And Corning Ware! And CRISCO!!!!! And I also have my printer for my computer, along with my keyboard and mouse…I can’t wait to hook up those…I hate using this pad on the laptop instead of the mouse.

We left late this afternoon to get some estimates for the shelving we would like to put in the kitchen. We stopped at one place in Marsciano, then went to a place near Magione that our friends John and Margaret recommended. I’m a little nervous about the estimates, but at least it will give us a starting point. We may end up buying ready made if this option proves too costly. We also stopped by the electronics store to see if the advertised TV had arrived, but, in true Italian style, perhaps tomorrow.

We finished off the evening with dinner at Ternana’s. I had planned to be good, and eat a nice low carb dinner of roasted chicken and a salad, but as soon as we walked in the door, Marco told us he had tortellini in brodo, and chicken with mixed vegetables. We both said “Yes!” Any time the chef recommends something, we say yes…it’s always a good idea, and tonight was no exception. Delicious as usual. And while we were eating, Marco brought some olive oil from his farm, and poured it on our bread, our chicken, and our vegetables. WOW! It was delicious. He told us he didn’t have a lot of oil this year, but what he did have was very good. We agreed!

Before we left, Marco also brought us a small Christmas gift…two bottles of his very own red wine!!!! “His production”, as he would say. We can’t wait to try it. I told him when we return from the states that I will cook something typically American for them…I’m thinking about a Derby pie, but haven’t yet decided. Any suggestions are welcome.

When we got home, Rolando was gone, the painting was finished, and the baseboard is up. It really finishes the room nicely. I’m glad we choose wood. That, plus the carpet we put under the table really warms up the room. When Wendy came to dinner last week she was amazed by how much bigger the room looks now…I think it’s just because the room is inviting…before it was so ugly you just wanted to turn and run!!! It’s not that I was able to see the potential; it’s just that I wanted to live in Italy so bad that I was willing to live in an ugly house, since that’s all we could afford. Luckily for us, it has really turned out beautifully, and we are both very happy with the results. We know that we will be more than ready to come home at the end of January.


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