Monday, September 29, 2014


Why is David collecting rocks?
I'll give you a clue.....

Saturday, September 27, 2014

So I was at the gas station the other day fillin' 'er up when a guy popped his salt and peppered head into my open window (more salt than pepper).

guy: you wanna buy a house and some land in Maberga?

me (a little dumbfounded): um...what?

guy (in rapid-fire italian, almost without breathing): I have a house and some land in Maberga, a lot of land, and I never use it.  I never go there.  Why should I go there?  Why should I have it.  I haven't been there in years.  I don't remember the last time I was there. I want to sell it.  Well, I have to ask my sister too but she doesn't go there.  Why should she go there?  Why should she have land in Maberga?  I'm sure she'll want to sell too.  Do you want some land and a house in Maberga?

me (a little shocked by the babbling head of what must be an old Mabergino, whom I'd never met): I HAVE a house and land in Maberga.

guy: well if you want another one.  or more land.  I have a lot of land.  or if you know someone who does.  I live right there (pointing to the completely nondescript 1970s apartment complex across from the gas station).  You can just find me there.  It's a lot of land.  And the house, it's near the church.

And then the guy was gone.  I gave a quizzical look at the woman pumping my gas.

gas lady: he must have known you live in Maberga.

Yesterday I went up to Maberga Soprana for a walk with the dogs.  I pondered living up there and was trying to figure out which house belonged to this Mabergino I didn't know.  I do know who owns most of the places up there.  Like this one

and these

The guy saying that "it's near the chruch" doesn't really shorten the list since you can just about touch the church from any window in any house in Maberga.  So, the guy could be trying to sell this one:

 or maybe this one
 or this one
In any case, that guy must be nuts.  Why would he prefer a 1970's apartment in town to any of the above beautiful options?!  People are weird.

Monday, September 22, 2014

Surfing and Turfing at 45

In the couple of weeks whilst I wasn't posting to my blogs, I started a new year on the planet.  What follows is the photo record of my 45th birthday.  The theme was surf and turf.


Breakfast with new socks

a morning walk by the sea

with a coffee and a cute guy

and warm water, unfortunately no suits

Then a hike in the mountains

to just the right spot for a picnic

 with just the right treats
and the ceremonial casting on of the birthday sweater


then back in the car to head home

where we were attacked by dogs that looked like Ruffino

escaping only to stumble on this beautiful mountain church

And finally,  pressed and dressed and ready for some surf and turf with pals

PS.  Thanks, David for catering to all my whims (on that day, and, well,  most other days too). Oh, and also for the awesome magic internet gadget you gave me that is allowing me to post this from my studio.  I promise, you'll never have to listen to another Agatha Christie audio book or any music from the 80s blasting through the house ever again.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

So I got a call yesterday in my capacity as secretary of Maberga.  It was from a neighbor.  Let's call him Paolo.

L: Yes, hello Paolo.
P: LINA! I'm Paolo.
L: Yes, hello Paolo.
P: LINA! the hunters!  the hunters have paid for the road?
L: Yes Paolo, the hunters paid their bit this year.
P: LINA! They don't have the right to pay! 
L: Actually Paolo, they don't have the right to come up our road to hunt but seeing as they do anyway, yes, they have the right to contribute to the road work.
P: LINA! Who gave them a key to the gate?!
L: Well, Paolo, I don't know exactly since I've only been here 10 years and they've been coming for a lot longer than that.
P: LINA! They shouldn't have a key.  And they shouldn't pay.  They shouldn't come up.  If they pay I'm not paying.
L:  Well, Paolo, I don't know what to tell you.  I can't make you pay.
P: LINA!  I'm not paying. The hunters can't pay. I'm not paying. 
L: Ok, Paolo.  Anything else?
P: LINA! buona sera.

We do sort of have a problem with hunting squads coming up here.  It sucks actually.  They come really early in the morning on the two days a week when hunting is allowed (one being Sunday-- yeah, I don't really like sleeping in anyway).  They have big trucks and dogs with bells, and of course those pesky guns.  No one who owns property up here likes having them come up but no one does anything about it.  They come up with such casual sense of belonging and confidence of propriety that someone at sometime must have told them that it's ok.  That, and they all have keys to the, yeah, someone at some time who does have the right, told them it's ok.

Kind of funny that there is another neighbor who hasn't paid his road dues for about 8 years because "the hunters don't pay, why should I?".  Maybe I can get his money now, seeing as how Paolo's not paying.

Being an elected official is pretty much a crappy job.