Sunday, June 28, 2009

Farewell Tour Sicilian Style

Last two full days in Catania. . . WOW!

We went over to Giulio Romano's family summer home right next to the castle in Aci Castello for lunch. We anticipated a great meal, we would not be disappointed!

On the walk over, we caught sight of some of our favorite things.

The Agip Gas Station Chain's
Fire-Breathing, Six Legged Dog

No one has ever really explained this very cool logo to me.

Hams hanging in a local
"Mom and Pop" grocery store

A small Flower Shop staff working hard at their craft


Giulio's Mom was more than ready to feed the assembled multitudes! What a GREAT cook and wonderful hostess, GRAZIE A LEI!!!

Botero has been commissioned
to paint my portrait!

The Romano's have several of his prints throughout their summer house.

Gustavo recounting his recent accident

What are they up to?

At dinner Friday night, the subject of my tonsorial splendor came up. Laurie mentioned what a tough time she is having trimming my hair and beard with the cheap hair clippers we bought back in February at the IPerSimply Super Mercato.

Upon hearing this Gregorio sat up straight in his chair and eagerly volunteered to cut my hair Saturday after lunch at Giulio's.

I'm not sure of the exact psychological dynamics but over the years I have noted a primal need for men to unite and gawk anytime someone volunteers to have his hair cut away from a real barbershop.

Crowds assemble, opinions are given, ongoing critical analysis is offered, the group must be satisfied!

After our GREAT meal, we assembled on the patio with a gorgeous view of Aci Castello's harbor. Gregorio pulled out his bag of tricks and the game was afoot!

First Things First

A detailed survey of the territory in question is a must before the fun begins.

Gustavo finds a new job

Gregorio allowed his able bodied apprentice, Claudio, to work his magic for awhile.

Giulio provides his Manicuring Services


Claudio carved this into my dome which reminded me that in the Final 2009 IFL Season Statistics, the Elephants were ranked #1 in the ten team league in Pass Defense allowing a league low 902 yards in nine games.

The Catania eleven finished ranked #4 in Total Defense allowing 2,401 yards on the campaign.

Both of these defensive marks were tremendous improvements over 2008's defensive performance. I am VERY proud of how hard our players worked this year to attain this level of performance.

The preliminaries finished,
it was time to get serious!

For this part of the haircut, an experienced master is a MUST!

Analysis, Analysis, Analysis

Gregorio wanted Claudio to get
a "feel" for perfection!

Those assembled became very emotional watching a "Capolavoro" in progress!

Final Touches

Claudio trims

Gregorio massages

Giulio and Gustavo blow dry

All are proud!

Giulio was out of camera range crying at the sheer beauty of it all.

Magic Moments in Sicily

Looking more Italian every day

Piazza Bellini and Quaranta Gelato

We arrived here at about 10:30 p.m. to hook up with some more of the Elephants at the Fondo Biancho. Having a mandorla and coco gelato first was a must!

Ika and Laurie

If you need to laugh, just hang out with Ika for about 30 seconds.

Ika and Tony "Call Me Pony" Gulisano

Pony had a GREAT season at Falcon for the Elephants this year. Look for their son Edoardo "Call Me Bambi" to have a great year at WR as a rookie on the Junior squad this fall.

We saw several Elephants and their friends at Fondo Bianco. It was hard saying goodbye to people you have grown close to and don't know how long it will be until you see them again.

Piazza Bellini at 1:30 a.m. as we left.

The walkway by the harbor where our car was parked was quite deserted.

It ALWAYS comes back to
mysterious DUBAI!

As we approach our final day in Catania, we continue to struggle with the conflicting emotions of sadness in leaving treasured friends, anticipation in going on the 17 day Grand Tour and anxiousness in seeing our family and friends back in America.

"Barber Shop" action

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