Monday, June 18, 2012

Italy vs Ireland

Tonight at 8:00 Italy will play Ireland in soccer. There are Italian flags flying in unexpected places, such as the bars.  We were told that everything in Umbertide this evening would be "bloccato"  this is not a happy word in Italian but it is a useful one.  It means not is used for traffic jams, printer jams, the Bancomat (ATM) that ALWAYS eats Adelle's card, and any other thing you can think of that doesn't work in Italy.

The card playing men have been moved to the side.  It is very, very hot here, near 100 degrees. (Remember when the Stoic One insisted we get air conditioning?  Thank you darling!) Anyway, there are now plastic chairs set up in the piazza for the men to watch a big screen TV in the piazza. This does several things.  It gets them out of the house, they have a sense of camaraderie, and they can drink to their heart's content.  Are there women down there?  Did you forget where I am?
The TV screen will be set up right beneath me.  I hope they win.

We have had a major day of accomplishments today.  We went to the bank to pay our property taxes and every thing went through without incident.  Our tax was E185 for 6 months. Such a deal compared to California.

Then we went to the mall.  I should have taken pictures.  It is so strange to find a mall in Medieval land but there is one there.  Adelle wanted lip gloss and I needed a bathing suit having forgotten mine at home.  There is an H&M at the mall and I bought a suit for 24 E. such a deal.  Hope it lasts through a few swims.  While standing in line at the bank to pay our property tax (today was the last day, 4:00 the last hour...people were lined up to pay.) we ran into our English friend Sally who has a villa up in the hills, so we will go visit her on Thurs. hence the bathing suit.

We went off to lunch at one of our favorite places outside of Perugia.
There was a round table of about 15 men sitting in the dining room.  They were being given a lecture on salt...I of course butted in when our waiter came by and asked about the salt.  He told me salt was a passion of his, and the men were restaurant owners that went to each others restaurants once a month.

There were 9 different types of salt; Himalayan, red and black; Hawaiian; Maldon, from England; lightly smoked; heavily smoked; Malaysia; Pakistan; Italy.  We were told how to use the salt, with appetizers, fish, meat, grilled meat, fish soup etc.  They we were given the most delicious home made rolls and olive to dip, then the salt. Some tasted quite different, others were more difficult to distinguish one from the other.  Very interesting.
I had stragozzi pasta with fava beans, tomatoes, pancetta, and a tiny bit of cream and olive oil.  Scrumptious.

When we got back to the apartment, we had news that our lot in Lake Almanor, which has been sitting doing nothing for 5 years, has an offer on it.  Whoohoo.  One more step on the trip to retirement and to Italy. Hope Italy wins, unless your Irish, otherwise I will have a very unhappy piazza.

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