Sunday, November 12, 2006

News! News! News!

Several bits of exciting news to pass along...

1. I am alive. I could start yet ANOTHER blog entry with the standard apology for not having written in so long, but you all know the drill by now: best of intentions and yet not a single post in weeks and weeks. I have to send the most apologies to Jackie who generously puts up with a blogging partner who doesn't blog. Mi dispiace, Bella!

1. I discovered my new favorite way of making lists...all number ones!

1. Jackie is now Zia Jackie to an adorable little gal. Many congratulations to Paul and Carolyn at the birth of Miriam! She's adorable (we've all been drooling over photos here on this side of the Atlantic), and Jackie and Antonello can hardly wait to meet her in person soon.

1. My Aunts Betty and Gigi gave me the greatest idea for blog entries. "You could post a recipe of the week!" they said when I talked with them before leaving the States almost a month ago. Perfect -- food and blog posts, the best of both worlds. So look for recipes to begin coming soon. (I've already been hard at work taste testing. I love this research!)

1. I really have been making some blog posts recently, just in a notebook instead of on the computer. So I'll begin with the earliest one here and play a little catch up until my posts are in real time again.

18 October 2006
For the first time in a long time, I'm writing from bell'Italia. (Is that any excuse for the long break between posts? Maybe if I had taken the slow boat, mateys. Rrrrrrrrrr....rr.)

So the blog has come full circle. Jackie and I started posting when we both lived in Italia that hot, tv-flying, handkerchief-game-playing summer three years ago. Now, after Jackie's married her Italian sweetheart (three times) and set up a home in Macerata, I'm back in the bell paese for at least a year. Grad school classes at Slow Food U begin on Nov. 22, and I'll be among the students. A dream come true!

Before the first class begins, my friend Eric and I will be lucky enough to be guests of Jackie and Antonello, make a trip to Genova (finally!), and probably make a pilgrimage to the second most beautiful city in Italia (Lucca). Firenze is also on the list along with potential stops in Montepulciano, Loreto, Urbino, wherever the wind (and Trenitalia) takes us.

Eric has to return to the States at the end of the month, but then I'll have another guest in Italia. We've been friends for a long time, and life has been quite sweet as we've fallen in love. I'm so excited to be with my boyfriend Bowden for his first trip in Italia, his first cone of native gelato, his first steps in Macerata.

There's so much to look forward to over the next month, and at the same time, the last month has had it's highlights, too. For better or worse, I quite all my jobs about a month ago and set up high expectations for what I'd accomplish with all the free time. Of course, regular blog posts were at the top of the list. A quick look at the archives will show how successful I was, and that's a pretty good indication of the fulfillment I made of other goals: numerous books, frequent Italian lessons, a hearty exercise regimen... Well, I suppose I did make some unconscious progress on those goals. I finished Heat (thanks for this terrific book, Joan!), taught Bowden a couple essential Italian phrases, and moved out of my apartment (with no elevator that's a pretty hearty regimen).

One list, though, was quite successfully accomplished. One by one, Bowden and I checked off restaurants, the Lotus International Music Fest, visits to State Parks, and adventures in cooking. It was a page full of things unique to Indiana, activities to accomplish before getting settled in my new home far away from the Hoosier land.

Even my folks and I had an adventure before I left. Portland Arch is in a federally protected nature preserve west of Lafayette. To give them a perfectly characteristic episode by which to remember me, I slipped on some stones and fell in the creek. Maybe just a little ground water baptism from Indiana to send me on my way?



At 7:05 PM, Anonymous Cassie said...

Love hearing from you bella! I am so glad that everything has been a #1! I miss you and hope that your first day of school is wonderful!


P.s. Love the picture of your parents memorable momment!

At 11:14 PM, Blogger Susan in Italy said...

Your aunts have got the right idea. I'd love to know more about slow food and especially your experiences at SLU. Please post recipes!

At 3:45 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I remember another time when you went into the water - from a canoe - with fishing poles, lawn chairs and all!
Love, Aunt Betty

At 10:59 AM, Blogger Stelle In Italia said...

Thanks, Cassie! Miss you, Bella, and hope to see you soon!

Oh, that's right, Aunt Betty...I guess we DO have prior experience with an unexpected dip. :-)

Thanks, Susan! Hope you enjoy the Sugo delle Zie. You're site is really interesting...I love the idea of posting a song to go along with the taste testing. I'm sorry I haven't taken up the Meme tap from Jackie yet. More soon!


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