Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Happy Birthday Nonno

Although my Nonno Tony lived into his nineties, he didn't make it as far as today, which marks his 99th birthday. Ninety-nine years.

His mother carried him during the time of cholera epidemics in southern Italy. She was later taken by the 1918 Spanish influenza pandemic.

Italy, as a country, was only 50 years old. As was Italian as the official language, an adaptation of the Tuscan dialect, and the language of Dante.

In 1911, L'Inferno, an adaptation of Dante's Inferno was the first full-length Italian feature film ever made. It was a silent film, which wasn't shown in Nonno's town. When he was born, there was no electricity in town. Today, you can watch the YouTube version on your phone.

The world has seen much change since the days of Nonno's youth and life in his small Calabrese town. Today I remember his journey and his life.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

What I did on my summer vacation

I've neglected this blog for far too long. If you've come back, I thank you so much for your patience. Now that fall is approaching I will dedicate more time to keeping up to date. In the meantime here are some snippets of things I've seen or done over the past four months, or "what I did on my summer vacation."

On the outskirts of El Paso, I fell in love with fresh fruit popsicles at Flautas y Paleteria Tepalca in Canutillo, Texas. When I say fresh, mmmm, I can't come close to describing how deliciously orgasmic they were. Take a look at the pinons in the creamsicle below; then I went back for mango. This was an unusual discovery due to road work on the Interstate but it will now be a regular stop on my trips to that part of the US.

I saw a sonoran gopher snake and heard coyotes howl in the desert of southern New Mexico.

I found a metal tray decorated with actual hotel stickers. Not a replica. Not massed produced. The real deal. Looks like someone had a better summer vacation than I did, 60 years ago.

I discovered more treasures amongst the wonderful things that were once my Nonna Elvira's. Here's a carefully preserved stencil that she used as a pattern for her cutwork linens.

On a quick trip to Nelson, BC and a lovely walk along the lake, I came across a playground for adults fitted with outdoor fitness equipment. Best of all, t's FREE.

In Vancouver, the BC Place stadium roof deflated and the new retractable roof is under construction.

In keeping with the roof theme, the Canada Place (convention centre) roof is being "rehabilitated." Looks like a hazardous job.

I went to Alaska and saw humpback whales bubble net feeding. A humbling experience.

And, finally, while the weather is still nice, this is my favourite coffee place.

While I'm having my coffee please leave a comment letting me know what you'd like to hear more about.