We have been in Italy for about a week now maybe, I'm not really sure. Not having a watch, calendar or job is making it hard to remember where and when I am, all the timezone changes don't help either. Think about that while you watch the clock at your desk waiting for your lunch break.
We have gotten set up in Tortona as our homebase. It's a great little town where everyone knows everyone else and their business. Our new friend Nathaniel is hosting us and being our tour guide introducing us to all his friends, which is just great. Incomparable as a way to learn the real culture. We've been eating great food and drinking great wine of course. All in all things are great.
We went down to Genova on the riviera on Saturday for dinner, about an hour drive south. We had dinner and drinks in a bar on the water, then walked around on the seashore for a good long while. It took me a long time to remember the last time I saw the ocean (thanksgiving in Santa Booboo) -does this not count because it's a sea? In the car all the way back to Tortona I discussed/argued about economics with Bepe the Physicist (you know, like Joe the Plumber), which was fun of course.
We are now on day two of our tour of Italy. We got into Venice yesterday afternoon, briefly got hopelessly lost in these canals, then got some dinner. All in all a good day. We wandered around last night for a while, went to the big plaza you see on postcards (Santo Marco?). We saw the water where it shouldn't be because the city is sinking. Apparently, the water's rising too, so things are not looking good for this city.
It's an intersting city, but really touristy and kind of themepark-ish. I think we're going to head out pretty quick and go someplace where people are normal and not trying to sell us trinkets. Florence and Sienna are next, word is they're more like real cities.
As Pat described, this stove project is going well. It's all very promising, we've sketched the outline of what could prove to be a fruitful partnership. Assuming the particulars work out, it gives us another angle for our work to keep us busier and more forward looking. In an ideal world, it also creates the possibility of not getting real jobs come September. Real meaning 'boring and crappy', not 'one in which you are paid.' Anything we do after maple would have to include the latter for sheezy.
But yea, going back to the title of the post. I have never been Italian cuisine's biggest proponant, too much starch. I'm digging it now though, its less pasta based then the Italian food you find in America. I'm getting cheese on top of cheese, which I fully support.
All in all, the quality and pace of life here is great. We take about eight coffee breaks a day where we meet up with the dude who owns the bookstore next door, then we all walk to one of the million little coffee shops and drink some massively tasty cappucinos. Way better then drinking cup after cup of Starbucks and eating yo cheese sandwiches at your desk.
(Either my spelling is perfect or the spell checker isn't working. I assume it's the latter, so get off my back yo.)