Tuesday, August 04, 2015

Residents, Not Natives, and a Special Guest

So, in September we will have been living in Maberga for 11 years.  As of June this year we have been living in Italy for 13 years.  We've earned the status "resident".  And still, we are not from here.

This "non-native" status is becoming less and less obvious every year.  We notice it, and others notice  it in us, in more and more subtle ways and behaviors. For example, I can now say at least 3 whole sentences to a stranger in Italian before he/she hears my Wisconsin accent and asks me where I'm from.   Shit, at that rate I should be able to have a complete supermarket checkout transaction without the checker asking where I'm from by the time I'm 70.

And I still won't be "from here".  Let me give you some more examples.

Last week was the annual Maberga Water War.  It's an annual event held here in Maberga where neighbors get panicked about the lack of water in the springs that we all use to water our ortos and then start acting Medieval.  They start cutting off each other's water supply in one way or another.  Sometimes the battles of this war entail people higher on the water chain (aka: farther up the mountain) simply taking more than their share, leaving the folks lower on the chain with minimal or none.  Sometime people just disconnect neighbors' tubes if they think they are taking more than their share. And sometimes the tubes actually get cut...chopped up....made into many pieces thus rendering them incapable of carrying water.  Oh what fun are the drought days of summer in Maberga.

David and I won the war this year but due to no (or very little) skill, knowledge, or actual fighting on our own behalf.  Think of us as France. Our tubes were disconnected.  We made an ally in another  neighbor also affected by our lack of water (think England), who then brought in another ally (think USA) who fought the battle.  War over.  David and I gave out chocolate bars.

Yes. After 10 consecutive Maberga Water Wars we still don't know what we're supposed to do.  And our neighbors KNOW that we still don't know what to do.

Another non-native behavior that we continue to do showed up just this week in the form of this...

This week at the discount market is "Mexican week" (it's a German market chain).  We have an embarrassingly large amount of that cheese right now in our fridge.  I don't know too many natives who would be as darn happy about that cheese stash as we are.

In other random Maberga catch up news, look who's here!

That's Mila - the famous Mila from Creature and Creations,  the well-known German author,  and of course OliveKnitting commenter.  I was lucky enough to get to see her twice!  Here she is in Maberga

Check out her shawl!  Yeah, she made that.  And yeah,  I'm going to make the twin since she kindly brought me this thoughtful gift

Instructions and enough yarn to make two of those nice shawls - one just like hers and another in lovely shades of my favorite green. PLUS, a nice fan to keep me cool in the heat wave whilst I'm knitting.  Mila's daughter gave me this

Having that hanging on the outside of my fridge might make me even happier than that stash of nacho cheese inside of it.


  1. What a nice gift. Looking forward to see the finished shawl from your hands. The yarn looks really great and soft. I wish you luck in the water war and "Happy Nachos"- evenings in your beautiful yard.

  2. Really, 11 years in one place, amazing. I can't believe it's been that long.
    Cheers, Earle

  3. Now I will never change thinking of David and you as "France"... It was so nice seeing you. I enjoyed the Pizza-Baking-Evening so very much! Your place is so special and beautiful - even when belonging to the famous Water War Zones...
    Can't believe I'm back at home. Miss the mountains so much...

  4. The chocolate bars were a really good idea. Perhaps if they know they are the reward you can get water faster/more easily? ;)

  5. Love the yarn - will make a gorgeous shawl.