Monday, February 25, 2008

The People of Catania

This is the sun rising in the East this morning as viewed from the upstairs patio at Malibu.

The question is did I wake up in time to take this picture at 5:45 a.m. or was I just getting home?

Do you remember the joy of riding a brand new bike as a kid?

Did I mention that Italians like to talk with their hands?

Two boys and a ball, it doesn't get better than this as a kid!

This interesting old house is on the water on the path of my daily morning walk.
LAURIE IN ROMA: Less than 72 hours until her plane lands in Roma! This morning while standing in the Cityper Market parking lot waiting for Jason to get something out of the car, I looked around at the cars and the people as was struck by a feeling. I no longer feel like a visitor or tourist, Aci Castello/Catania is where I live and work, these are my new towns. I like the feel of my new surroundings.

When I was researching Catania before I left California, the people I spoke with that had visited Sicilia in the past usually said the same thing, “Why would you want to go to Catania? It’s nothing like Rome, Florence, Venice, etc.” That is exactly why I love Catania! We are not living in a tourist town although there are some historical sights and summer’s heat will draw MANY visitors to our beaches. Catania is basically a gritty working town with vibrant people, great food and a great range of nighttime activities. The best thing here is the people not the things or the sights.

We have found people here who you are glad you had a chance to meet including, of course, the Elefanti, their wives, girlfriends and children. We see people standing on street corners just talking, kids playing in piazzas, crazy drivers, funny billboards and people engaged in interesting cultural habits that are different but still very charming from what we are used to in America.

I have mentioned young love before. Here there are always public displays of affection. We think it might be because everyone lives at home with Mom and Dad until they are married so the streets are the only place for “privacy” for young adults/teenagers.
The calendar says it’s winter so our friends are wearing their scarves, fur coats, heavy jackets, etc. If the weather goes up into the 70’s (21 degrees Celsius) like the last two days, it doesn’t matter, we will wear our winter clothes because it is winter! I’ve been wearing a t-shirt and shorts today while Jason is doing the same plus wearing flip-flops, the looks we get are interesting…crazy Americanos, IT’S WINTER DAMN IT!!!
I love Italian kids and their parents playing in parks or piazzas. The bambini have the same joy for life as the adults only they are much more fun to watch.


Sherlyn Claridge said...

Hi George,
I don't know if you got my first comments but wanted you to know it is so enjoyable to read about your wonderful experiences and how much you are truly enjoying everything, big and small. It sounds just like you. Have a great time with your sweetheart Laurie when she arrives! Ciao, Sherlyn Claridge

Heather Linderman said...

George, or should I say FRANK (per J's latest blog)...I just wanted to tell you that I am very pleased with your improved work on picture descriptions. KEEP IT UP!

~Heather (J's sis)

George said...


Tutti e' bene!!! I am having a delightful time in my new home.


My captions are ALL about keeping you happy. By the way we played golf today and Jason mentioned how your older brother once clocked you in the noggin with a golf club in the backyard. Hope you've recovered.