Summer is now a memory. The sandals are packed away along with the shorts and swimwear, waiting to reemerge next spring--or summer. The pool has on its winter coat--and autumn is upon us, in all its glory and color. And our old wood burning stove does its job and keeps us warm as the chill of late afternoon sets in.
A new chapter in our adventure has begun, enticing us with the hope of experiences it will bring. The vines are empty of fruit--their leaves turning gold and orange and yellow and red--the colors of fall. The maple tree we watch through the window of our door, the one you saw dressed in green two months ago, now recalls the lovely Adirondacks in the fall--colors almost too garish to be real--but they are. Colors which could only be made by the great creator and given to us as precious gifts.
The tourist season is over (well, almost) and the piazzas and restaurants and shops and stores once again belong to the people of Greve. Italiano has become the dominant language once more--tedesco (german), inglese, and the hodge-podge of other sounds is noticeably missing. Things are settling in for a long winter's nap.
Restaurants cut back their hours, some opening only for weekends, many will open for dinner only or lunch only and then close early. Umbrellas have found their winter homes and patio seating is traded for the warmth of cozy interiors.
Yesterday Ken and I ate at a lovely little restaurant in Panzano. Just us and one other couple were there whereas it would have been full of laughter and talk just two weeks ago. In talking with our waitress, we found that she and her husband are the owners. They will soon cut back to weekends only and hope that they will have enough business to justify that. If not, they will close for 2-3 months. This is difficult for them as they still have rent and other costs to maintain during a closing.
It is raining now and my wash is on the line. Fortunately, it is sheltered and so unless a gale comes up things won't get any wetter than they already are but--for sure--they aren't going to get any drier either. When there is a break in the rain, I will rush down and retrieve them, set up the clothes drying rack and see what happens indoors--which won't be much until later when we start the fire again.
Casey is upstairs watching Pinnochio 2000--again. Ken is cleaning the dishes after we had combination chimichunga/burritos in flour tortillas for lunch. Sadly, we are nearing the end of the chedder cheese we brought with us and the tortillas won't be around much longer either--both have frozen quite satisfactorily. But the bag of dehydrated refried beans is still pretty full as is the bottle of El Pato hot sauce. This has been Mexican food weekend as last night we had tacos--with good corn tortillas! So good.
I think this will be a family time Saturday afternoon. Last week some friends from Santa Monica whom we met here sent Casey the ET video and so we will watch it together as the rain decorates the windows. It doesn't seem as if it has been 30 years since we first enjoyed this charming alien. I hope that Casey finds it as enchanting as the children then did.
Below us in an open field the traveling circus is set up--a big top tent, a Piranha show, and more intriguing little things. It came to town earlier and has spent several days getting ready for its two day stand--and now it rains. We may still try to get there as it would be fun to see what it is like--it seems to harken back many years when children were mystified and entranced by the simple things life brings.
It is fascinating to see these huge rigs maneuvering down little streets that are really no more than alleys with tight turns along the way. If I hadn't seen this be done, I would have known it was impossible. For me sometimes getting down these same roadways is a challenge--but, then, I am not Italian and part of a magic show.
Oh--just looked out and the rain is in hiatus and the sky is clearing. Time to gather the wet laundry and maybe take a jaunt down the hill to the show of shows. Ciao!
God sometimes gives us unexpected gifts. Our gift has been a grandson who enlivens our lives and makes retirement very different than the one we anticipated. He is a special joy. And that's "Casey." In 2006 we fulfilled our dream of living in Italy for a year. It was every bit as wonderful as anticipated. This blog begins in 2005 as we prepared for that experience. Since then we have explored many places together. That's the "Travel." And finally, I am a person of opinions--spiritually, politically, on just about anything and that's the "Other Stuff." Welcome to my blog.