Be patient!

OK, you guys, we are here and trying to get established, but our mailboxes are full of messages to get busy with the blogs. We have shopped, walked, and gone to meet my old friends to introduce them to Cheryl: Luca the ceramics guy; Sam and Giorgio, no longer business partners but working in shops across the same street from each other (one selling leather jackets, one selling designer handbags); Christian, the waiter at the trattoria beneath our apartment; Cristiano, Bob and Martina at the Chili Bar in our old neighborhood, Benita and her son, Luigi, at the Mercato Centrale; The Moroccan, a produce guy who thinks he cannot ever give me enough free produce to pay for the photo I gave him 2 years ago; and–ta da!–Mara, Our Lady of the Vegetables. More introductions are coming for Cheryl, but we have already left several pounds of our shoe leather on the cobblestones, and walked most of the city.

Getting our cell phones operational took 3 trips to the phone store–one to see that they closed for lunch, one for the SIM cards, one for the credit on the account. Cheryl talked to EVERY wallet seller in the street stalls, looking for a wallet like mine–and found a brilliant yellow one even better than mine. We touched 100 scarves, got solicited to purchase all sorts of things, and mostly just enjoyed the carnival atmosphere of the street marketplace. Coming here with a professional shopper is a very different experience–you didn’t (and won’t) see me trying on fabulously expensive items that have no chance at all of ever being mine. Cheryl? It’s all just part of the game. We are having a ball!

I’ll go home tonight and prep the next photos to upload–I think I’m “getting” how to do this blog thing. Without wireless access anywhere (what a luxury in London last year!), I have to take my laptop to the Internet Train (Cheryl thought it was in a railroad car, especially equipped–but it’s just a chain of internet access shops across Italy), then hook up WITH a wire, and upload my posts. We have been turning out the lights after 1 a.m. each night, but up at 7. Something had to give, and it has been regular blogs. I like the easy way of posting photos and getting comments back, too–this may just work!

More later, all you impatient people who have been pressing for news. All is terrific, and we could not be more delighted with how our trip is going so far. So, it’s 9 p.m. our time, and I’m headed back to the barn–through the little alley connecting the Internet Train street with the piazza where we live, nicknamed “Pee Alley” for the distinct aroma of the main activity there in the dark. (Many times I have just walked by with my laptop, pretending “I see nothing!”)

Ciao, a tutti! A doppo! (Bye, everyone, until later!) Our vin santo and biscotti await us!