Monday, May 23, 2011

The Fountain of Saturn

The Fountain of Saturn, 1912
Adolf de Meyer

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Upstairs, Downstairs

Months ago, while I was probably being yelled at by an Italian bus driver, you were all cozying up watch 'Upstairs, Downstairs.'  I, unfortunately, have just seen it and all I can think about are the amazing interiors.  I nearly fern greened myself when I saw that gorgeous fern green sitting room.  And the tile floor in the hall?  I needn't say more.  I'm sure this is old news to all of you, but I really hope they continue, even if it's just to see what else production designer Eve Stewart concocts.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

The Betrothed

Whilst in Italia, the handful of you will remember that I was stranded without Internet access, spare the half hour here and there I'd spend next to my immigrant peeps at the Bengali Internet Cafe.  Factoring in this and the fact that I spent what seemed to be three hours everyday on a bus or train gave me a great time to spend reading.  And reading I did!  I burned through the books I packed at record speed.  Denton Welch, the Virginia Woolf's (Woolves?) I wanted to read, 'The Razor's Edge,' two Evelyn Waugh, etc, etc. 

 As I was living in Italy, I decided I wanted to read some Italian writers.  Alessandro Manzoni's "I Promessi Sposi" (or "The Betrothed") is the book that everyone has to read as a teenager, and it's set on Como, a short drive from my house.  Big mistake.  There's a reason every Italian hates it.  It goes on and on, and then you think your getting somewhere and then another character is introduced then his ancestry is described and on and on and on and on and on. 

At page 300, I realized I didn't care if the 'betrothed' lived or died or if they even ended up together, but I definitely needed to put it down.  Ever since I have been in a reading funk, and need something witty and mean (I wish Nancy Mitford was still alive) to nurse me back to life.  I'm reading some Beverley Nichols, which seems to help, but if any of you have something ground-breaking, I'm all ears and hearing aids.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Blogger Twilight Zone

Sometime last Thursday, the Blogger world stopped, disappeared and took everything with it. This includes my previous updated blog post (the house is worth ten MILLION not 900K) and funny comments, namely the ones from Down East Dilettante.  Seems everyone has a story similar to that, but we all must carry on during this emotionally trying, treacherous battle we call blogging...chin up all!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

'Cedar Point'

Do you remember before I left for Italy, I showed you one of my many dream homes?  (If you need a refresher click HERE) Located on Mackeral Cove in Jamestown, I took a spin by this afternoon and had an illegal peak at it.

Will you believe it's for sale!?  I can't stand it!  And for a $940,000 asking price...which in reality is a not that bad, keeping in mind the view and property.

Not only that, it's seclusion, privacy and garden can't be beat.  Perfect for a life spent practicing dance routines in head-to-toe red that will never happen.  Oh and the Cedar Shaker shingle roof!  I'm flat-lining.

These are two pictures from the listing.  You'd think if you were selling a house like this, you could spend an extra couple dollars and get a better camera?  The house looks no where near as stunning as it really is in reality.

And let's not forget the garden, sweeping down the side of the house, surrounded by forests, covered with blooms, arbors with wisteria and plentiful vines with grapes.

So, if anyone has an extra million dollars they would like give to the Hibernian Homme Trust, I'm gladly accepting donations at the moment.  Please!

The last time I did this the property sold in about 4 days.  Let's see if it happens again.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Grey Gardens Strikes Back

Summer was in full bloom in Italy, but here, the buds are just bursting.  A few more hot days will hopefully get us back to scheduling.  We hope, lest I have a nervous weather breakdown.

On the subject of nervous breakdown, as I've come home I seem to be returning into the 'Grey Gardens' state I've lived in for the past 24 years.  I'm not sure if this is a good thing (it is) but the whole time away I didn't really think about crazy old eccentrics (at least as much as normal) and now they are flooding back.  Maybe this is why I had such a hard time blogging?

That's all for today, but it's nice to be back, and I forgot to tell you, 'You look absolutely terrific, honestly!'

Thursday, May 5, 2011

A shocking turn of events...

I know it's been lightyears since I've written, but I beg your forgiveness.

Two weeks ago exactly I woke up to a sunny day and a free morning.  I had an appointment at one but would spend the morning working out, cleaning and going to the market to buy some verdure.  After my run (side note: two months into the trip I noticed I had two panzeroti growing on my hips and a timballo growing on my mid-section, so I made a dramatic change in eating habits and exercise) I felt refreshed and that life couldn't get any better.  I was planning a trip to Dubai to visit a friend on another friends discount airline ticket.  It would allow me to leave the EU and renew my tourist visa for another three months.





Sbagliato!  As of April 2010, the EU changed their law for non EU visitors.  With a tourist visa, one can only stay in the country for three months within a six month time period.  Was this true I wondered?  Everyone said no.  That night at dinner with friends, all were optimistic.  Even I thought, maybe I can get someone in two weeks to sponser my work visa. 

Friday morning was even worse.  I visited the questura, or police station, in Varese (if any of you know the questura, you know it's the worse place on the planet) and they assured me even if I was hired, I couldn't return for another three months.  The only other option is a student visa.  But still only after being in the US for three months.  A call to a lawyer, same news.

DEVASTATION and tears on the street

But instead of driving off a cliff on the way home which was my original intention, I decided to look on the bright side of things.  Since the shocking news, I have been like mad emailing the Consulate in Boston, enrolling in a language school in Milano, and giving my CV to every English school in the province, thankfully securing work for when I return in September and looking for summer work back home.  I got on the plane on Tuesday morning and was still talking to my future employers.

That in a nutshell have been my past two weeks.  Sorry for the 'dear diary' entry, I promise to return to regular programming here on.

(Image above: About a month ago the wisteria were in full bloom along the side of the Pinacoteca di Brera)