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I Puffi

Or, How I Fell in Love with the Kilogram Scale I burst out laughing when I saw that the Italians call “Smurfs” “Puffi”. Or, to take the grammar to its proper usage. A “smurf” would be a “puffo.”  Or, “puffa” (feminine). It became the leitmotif of my culinary – how you say – overindulgences.  You can magine my joy when ...

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Everywhere You Look

I cannot believe it has taken me this long to visit Lake Como. I guess I thought it was only for the elites. Certainly, it has a rich history of being the relaxing playground of the rich. But, Varenna – where I am staying — has its own history. Once a fishing town, its only catch now is a nice ...

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Still Moving

I am on vacation and I have yet to stop moving.  24 hours door to door with a 7-hour layover in Bruxelles – turns out there is a cost to a $500 round trip to and from Roma. Oh, did I mention, I had a center seat to BRU and no seat – in fact I was standby from Brussels ...

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An Afternoon with Signora Maria

Visiting the cugini in Bologna, I had two missions: to enjoy the company of family, and to get my very own Signora Maria! Anyone who calls Signora Maria a terra cotta figure has clearly not met this delightful, whimsical character. Her creator is Anna Tazzari, an exquisitely talented artist in Bagnacavallo (outside Bologna).   My first exposure to Signora Maria was ...

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Little Tiles of Ravenna

What a lovely little Italian town is Ravenna. My Italian friends say “oh, che belli mosaici!!” (pronounced moh-ZAI-ih-chee). And yes, the mosaics here are unbelievably beautiful.  The little tiles of Ravenna are abundant and extant. Colorful and glimmering – golden little chips festooning the ceilings, the walls. Beautiful, indeed. Ravenna has it – and it knows it. You can buy a pass ...

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On the Street

Hear Ye! Hear Ye!  The latest in street performers in Rome. What are these people looking at?         This is a street performer unlike any I have ever seen on the street. Perhaps this pediatric attraction has been around for awhile, but not in my experience.  I happened upon little big blue baby while heading for my ...

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Hurry Up and Wait

I have often said, the Italy of my dreams is the Centro Storico.  Not necessarily the real Italy. Here I am smack dab in the middle of the train station in Milan. Just one of the Great Unwashed. Oh yeah: fair Italy — where is the goddam romance now.  The plan seemed pretty solid. To fly into Milan at a ...

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Ah, Rome. A Roma.

Ah, Rome. In Rome. One would not expect Rome, being centuries old, to change that much.  But, this visitor can certainly look at the Eternal City with fresh eyes. I see two styles of travellers. Those who explore new cities every time they set out, and those who return to the place(s) they love. That is the type of traveller ...

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City of Water

  How did the chicken cross the road in Venice? By riding on a little commuter boat called a vaporetto. A commuter’s gondola: a traghetto, like this one. A water taxi. Or, a gondola. After awhile I stopped taking pictures of the things they transport on boats in Venice: commuters, tourists, garbage, police and firemen, furniture, water and vegetables for the ristoranti, pipes, televisions, ...

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Musings on Getting Lost

Getting lost is a sore subject with me. I do it easily and often. It causes me anxiety.  So, what do you do when you find yourself someplace unfamiliar? What else — you get lost. There is this chocolate shop in Rome that I adore. It’s called Moriondo & Gariglio. I try to visit it every time I’m here. “Try” is ...

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