To see my tribute to Flo, go here

See about helping Flo's Haitian artist friends at Jakmel Ekspresyon

Monday, July 12, 2010

Weekend: grandi feste

We had an active weekend, hard to piece everything together. Saturday night Barnaby, who was with Flo almost to the end and had been part of the memorials, organized a huge dinner at his family house outside Perugia. Many artist friends went to eat in the yard with a great view of the area at dusk and beyond. It was mainly his sister, who lives there year-round, who prepared a great pasta dish. It was a terrific effort, and we got back at 1 a.m.

On Sunday we did an excursion to Spello. I wasn't sure what the current traffic rules were; there seemed to be restrictions at the entrance at the bottom the town that we usually used; we went around the outside, there were some lots below, but we went up and found a lot outside the walls at the top of the town. We walked around, seeing some nice-looking quiet streets that we didn't remember from previous visits. Our main place of interest in Spello is the church of S. Maria Maggiore. There was a sign in front saying absolutely not to enter while Mass was in progress, and that it closed at noon, which was getting close. We waited outside to see if it would be possible to get in; some people started going in anyway, but Mass was letting out and we had a few minutes to look at the chapel with Pinturicchio frescoes, frequently needing to feed the lights with €1 coins.

We sat down at the outdoor tables at Il Molino, the restaurant that we've long favored. They've gotten exotic, having pasta with fruit and ginger fillings and sauce. I had a mozzarella-fruit combination to start, and the pasta dish called polvere, meaning powder, or breadcrumbs in this context: a nest of taglierini with breadcrumbs and prosciutto.

My mother is not very good with climbing the streets of hill towns, and we decided we would meet at the bottom of the town, after Ken and Lesley went up to get the car. That worked out well, and we decided to take a scenic drive along the backside (considering Assisi to to be on the front) of Monte Subasio. It was a nice, somewhat harrowing drive, although we missed the turn for the super-scenic drive. There was some driving through the small streets of Assisi, which we didn't really want, but we got out o.k.

Sunday night, we were invited to join Graziano's extended family at his sister Franca's house. It was a nice thing to take in: chaotic scenes, a huge amount of food, and a very hot house. We were set up so those who were interested could watch the World Cup final as much as possible past the people facing us. For the second half, we could move to the sofa and see it better, while others sat on the roof terrace. After it was finally over in overtime, we could leave, satisfied with a wonderful meal.

On Sunday my father had noticed that one of his credit cards was missing. He figured that he last used it was on Friday at a rosticceria. On Monday he had me call them; although they were closed, someone answered and said they had the card; they called Visa and, being unable to reach us through those few days, they cut the card. That was fine with my father, who has other cards, and we're generally satisfied that merchants here are responsible.

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