Sunday, December 2, 2012

2 Dec 2012 Sunday in Cremona

I slept so wonderfully, only waking at 8.15 because my alarm went off. At 9.15 I was supposed to knock at Rosa's door but it was 9.30 when I finally was ready. It feels so good to have no schedule. I had focaccia with a glass of orange juice for la colazione (breakfast).

Mattia left for mass with his guitar, 15 minutes early.  Rosa and I followed. It takes 5 minutes on foot to arrive.

After twenty years Don Attillio, our family priest, has been transferred to small village,  Vescovato, 20 minutes away by car. Luckily he was still here to baptize Baby G.

The girls are really missing him. Church does not seem the same. The new guy has only been here two months. Apparently there were some politics involved in this transfer. Some were happy to see him go. But not us !!

Marina told me we can go see him when I come in the spring and it's ok to bring him See's Candy. I don't know why I never brought him See's before.

We spent the whole day at home. Rosa ironed and we talked. Noon began to approach. I then knew I had understood correctly last night. Today is Mario's birthday and they not we are going to his parents for lunch. I was invited but Rosa wanted time to spend together because she works during the week. I was very happy to spend a Sunday with her! We get so little time together and only twice a year.

With Rosa's new kitchen, I can sit across from her as she cooks. She made Melanzana alla Napolitano, which I recognized as a dish Alessandro made for me, but I had no recipe. It was just as good as I remembered.

Melanzana alla Napolitano~~
Peel an eggplant and slice it into 1/4 inch slices. Heat up an iron grill pan. Cook in both sides, making the grill marks, but also cooking. Layer in a small dish. Over each layer sprinkle a little salt, olive oil and red or white wine vinegar. Can add oregano or garlic. Serve at room temperature or chilled.

For lunch, Mattia, Rosa and I had pasta with tuna, capers and tomato sauce. Then, using a fresh plate, we had hot bread, slathered with stracchino soft cheese. The entire dish of eggplant we three devoured. 

As Rosa cleaned the kitchen, Mattia showed me the website where he works. An idea was born one afternoon and has now grown. The Caritas counselors there were pondering what other types of activities could they setup for the boys in their care.  These young men are immigrants who have been pulled off the streets. With church and state assistance they will become productive, educated Italian citizens and not living desperate lives. 

The idea of animals came up. Pet Therapy.  Donkeys were finally the chosen animal. Their empathetic dispositions are perfect for boys in this situation. The boys have even built huts for their donkeys on their property, behind the building which houses the main and original program. 

Daily chores caring for the donkeys gives them responsibilities and they have fallen in love with these animals. They now have a donkey expert on staff and a nearby vet donates his services because he likes what is happening here. So much more than they expected. 

Two one evening Mattia was talking about the project to Rosa. She said her agency would be interested in bringing their group of disabled adults for a field trip. Now those adults visit once a week. The young immigrant men help with those visits and have developed affection and understanding for the disabled visitors. 

Marina and Primo have arrived home, bringing an apple strudel from their vacation town.  We took the pizza dough Rosa had rising all day across the hall to their apartment and made pizza for everyone, including Marta and Mario who have arrived with Baby G.  This is the best pizza (and family) in the whole world!

As we ate the strudel, I noticed a new ring on Marta's finger.  How romantic!! Mario gave it to her for the birth of their first child.

No comments:

Post a Comment