Wednesday, December 03, 2008


The lady who lives opposite had put her Christmas decorations up by the weekend. That is unusual for here as even most shops do not do it before December 8th, which is a holiday and the real beginning of the festivities in Italy.

Not to be outdone, I paid the excellent Rosa for an extra half-day to come and help me deck my own halls. [This task usually takes me about 6 hours when I'm perfectly fit, so I knew I couldn't manage it on my own this time.] It was good to have cheerful company whilst digging out all my sentimental bits and pieces and Rosa, quite fascinated by it all, kept exclaiming that no one else she "does" for transforms their entire living space for Christmas. In the end she really got into it so we have tinsel on everything now! Simi is happy because as the cards start coming she gets lots of nice envelopes to destroy noisily, Chris Moose and Mickey Moose are pleased because they are on their annual expedition out of the bedroom and into the sitting room and I am content to sit and read or contemplate in the relaxing glow of the tree lights.

Last night I was sitting here thinking how desperate I was to get to Raffaele's for colour, cut and cuddle when all of a sudden the phone rang and it was he! He asked how I was and I explained that I am on the mend but can't yet walk as far as the salon. "But why didn't you tell us?!" he cried: "I'll send a car for you whenever you want to come. " So guess where I've spent the afternoon, reader, and I feel much better for it!

Later when I took Simi out I found my nice neighbour from along the street waiting for me. [She is one of the ladies who came to visit me in hospital.] "I just came to repeat that if you need anything I am here. Do come and see me one day and we'll have tea", said she. Then she took my arm and propelled me along the road to meet her husband and make sure I knew exactly which house she lives in. - More proof [as if I needed it] that Sicilians are amazingly thoughtful and kind.

The day has been blighted only by the fact that we are, again, without water in the building: The comune had "suspended" their water deliveries for about 6 weeks as there was no public money to pay the drivers or anyone else involved so the last 2 deliveries to the condominio have been by private carrier and paid for respectively by the capocondominio and myself. [Everyone else, coincidentally, seems to disappear along with the water!] About 10 days ago a refill mysteriously appeared while we were both out; thus we knew that "service" had been resumed. I requested a refill on Monday but there has been no sign of the lorry all evening. No water at this time of year means no heating, as the pressure thing on the boiler just will not move up far enough. [Although the temperature has remained at a pleasant 18 C all day, it drops fast at night.] So once more I am summoning my pazienza, and am relying on all the cheerful cherubs, resourceful reindeers and smiling Santa figures which surround me for encouragement!


Leslie: said...

What a wonderful man to send a car so he could do your hair for you! That's what I love about Italians - they are so hospitable. Just like your friend who made sure you knew her house so you can go for tea one day. I sure hope your strength is coming back and your Christmas will be bright and happy. :D

Unknown said...

Those are truly friendly folks in Sicily!

You remind me that I want my holiday decorations up soon. Perhaps Friday, when my housekeeper next comes, it can be done.

Good healing and lots of water to you!

Whispering Walls said...

Raffaele is your true archangel

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

Hi, Leslie. Isn't he just?! Thanks for your good wishes xx Hi, Nick. Hope you get it done! Yes, people are friendly here - once they know that you speak their language and value their culture. Thanks for your kind wishes, too. WW, he certainly is!

CherryPie said...

How wonderful of Raffaele to take care of you so much, he must be a very special person.

jmb said...

It seems much more sensible to not do anything about Christmas until after Dec 8th. We seem to have been thinking about it for weeks now.

That wretched water system. But I am sure that the visit to Raffaele helps you to cope with it all now.

Anne in Oxfordshire said...

We all need someone like your friends and Raffaele in our lives..oh not to forget Rosa!!

Yes as Leslie says hope your strength is returning and you have a very joyous Christmas.

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

Yes, very special, cherrypie. Hi, jmb. The water arrived yesterday morning so OK for another 10 days, hopefully. I can cope with most situations better if I've had my hair done! Hi, Anne. Yes, we do. Thanbk you for your good wishes. We'll be in touch before Xmas. xx


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