Sunday, December 20, 2009

This Life

I meant to write yesterday but David and I joyfully discovered podcasts of This American Life. It started with this one at about 10am and went non-stop until midnight when I fell asleep trying to squeeze in one more before my eyes closed. If you've never listened to This American Life, I highly recommend it. And I'm not just saying that because I got sucked into the first one by my pride of being from Wisconsin (that was sarcasm...which you would recognize if you listen to that podcast I linked to above).

Anyway, enough about that American Life, let's talk about this Italian life, shall we?

So, David and I had some really special plans for the weekend. I mean, so special that I've been living in anticipation for the weekend for over a week since we had made these plans. I was so excited that I couldn't even talk about them here with you guys, lest I jinx myself and the weekend outing would not come to pass. But now, since these much awaited days' events were cancelled, I can talk about them.

We were invited by a friend of ours to spend the whole weekend with her and a group of other friends....

are you ready????...

picking her olives.

"oh my gosh!!! Thank you so much for including us in this. That's awesome. I can't wait!"

I spent the week trying to catch a cold. Or break a leg. Or get diarrhea.

Ok. I must interject here, that I fully recognize that there are many many people, including many of you reading now, who would give their eye-teeth or just a lot of money to have a weekend on a mountain in the Alps, a view of the Mediterranean Sea in the distance, an international group of really funny and interesting people to chat with whilst hanging from olive trees picking their fruit. In truth, I realize that now but had forgotten it until I was complaining to Mette about the weekend plans and she wisely pointed this out to me.

I don't mean to be unappreciative or ungrateful for the beauty of the opportunities that health, age, location, and general fortune have lain before me. I just don't like picking olive. If you are an anally retentive perfectionist (in recovery), seeing a tree with 1 million branches each containing 2 million olives that need to be picked by hand, it makes you want to curl up in a ball by the trunk and weep for your mother. I know this sounds odd coming from a girl, same aforementioned anally retentive perfectionist (in recovery), who knits. May seem odd that one who finds joy in creating a full-length wool jacket one stitch at a time would not find pleasure in the one-at-a-time-ness of the olive thing. I can't explain it. Maybe I like wool more than olives. Maybe I like sweaters more than oil. Maybe I like working alone instead of in a group. Who knows...let's just accept here that I don't like olive picking.

So Saturday morning I lie in bed, in anticipation of the day, doing a full body scan: bowels working just fine, no broken bones, not even a cough. Then I rolled over and saw this



I run downstairs to check for sure...

Can it be? Could it really be a ....

SNOW DAY!!!!!!!!!


Let me tell ya all something about snow days, they were awesome as kids but nothing compared to how they are for adults.

We played on the terraces with the dogs, I knit for about 20 hours, we ate homemade pizza for lunch and homemade chicken soup for dinner. We invited some neighbors in for a coffee who came up the hill on foot. And we listened to This American Life.

Snow days are awesome.

Oh, yeah, ok, so there are some minor inconveniences too. Like, ya know, water.

It seems that our water system has a hidden, double edged sword built in. We didn't even ask for that cut-us-coming-and-going feature, nope, it's just built right in. It looks like this: Do we keep the water running from the vasca so it doesn't freeze in the pipes, or do we turn it off so as not to waste the only unfrozen water we currently have which is that contained in the vasca?

Just a something to ponder on a snow day.