Ø When we first started living in Italy, I wrote many blog posts—at least every other day. Now I write rarely and sporadically. The reasons are various. I am enjoying la dolce vita, and writing is work. Also, I have grown accustomed to the differences between Italian and American culture now, so what might have struck me as an interesting cultural observation previously I now consider routine.
|Cena at Ca' Sandra with Elena and Davide.|
Ø I’ve done almost all the genealogical research that can be easily done, tracing my Seghieri family line back to the 1200s and Spadoni line to the 1400s. I’ve also met a ton of relatives named Seghieri and Spadoni, some as distant as 12th cousin 3 generations removed. I could go out of my way to meet more, but it’s no longer such a novelty.
Ø We’re becoming friends with three couples—one Norwegian and two American—who have purchased unfinished or crumbling old homes near us. All three have accomplished incredibly gorgeous transformations (one is still in the final stages). Are we jealous? Not in the slightest, though we are super impressed with what they’ve done. We already have a beautiful country home in Gig Harbor. We decided long ago that when we come to Montecarlo, we just want to focus on living a relaxed Italian lifestyle of pensionati (retired people). Our home is neither beautiful nor modern, and we have no intention of changing it.
Ø We have a lot of older wooden furniture, some that came with the home and some we bought at second-hand stores. With old wood comes the risk of our invasion by our worst enemies here, tarli—wood worms. We had tarli in our roof beams when we moved here in 2015, but we were able to eliminate them with treatment and paint. However, last spring we noticed some sawdust under a couple of chairs. We’ve tossed those chairs away, but when I did a more thorough inspection, I found at least six chairs, a table and a cabinet with dozens of tiny holes in each. I’ve spent several days injecting the holes with insecticide, using a syringe, and then filling the holes with putty. Now I’m coating them with a transparent protective spray.
Ø Electric bikes are awesome! We only rented a car for our first six days here, stocking up on some larger grocery items and taking trips to Lucca and the Valleriana—the valley above Pescia with 10 medieval cities. Since then, we’ve just done everything on our bikes. It helps that we have weather in the high 70s to low 80s every day, and it’s only rained for about two hours in the last month.
Ø We are leaving Montecarlo tomorrow for Athens, Greece, where we will meet up with Dan, Sandra and their kids for their fall break. After nine days there, we’ll head to Napoli and meet up with Linda, Wendy and Janet for a week in Southern Italy, and then we take a week-long cruise starting in Bari and ending in Salerno. From there, it will be back to Montecarlo, but just for a couple of days, and then it will be back to the USA.
Ø We will miss Montecarlo, but we’re also missing Gig Harbor. We seem to stay just long enough in one place such that we’re always satisfied—and then looking forward to going to the other place.