20.01.2013 - 20.01.2013 15 °C
After yesterday's travel day, we were relishing the time just to 'be' and to relax. The place in which we're staying is very restful. It hugs the side of a hill and we have a wonderful view of green hills dotted with orange-tile-roofed homes and orange and lemon trees. While the roosters crow all night and the dogs' barking echos throughout the valley, it still provides a peaceful atmosphere in which to rejuvenate.
The girls elected to stay in, talk and paint their nails (in anticipation of beach weather sometime soon, perhaps?). Ben and I went back to the centre of our little town and walked the beach promenade. There was no one about till around 2:30 pm, when it seems the locals finish their Sunday lunch. We then saw others appear, among them a family out walking, dressed warmly in winter coats, scarves and boots. It's enough to make me overheat just looking at them. We may have mentioned before that we see a lot more smokers here in Europe. From time to time, I come upon those vending machines selling cigarettes -- I haven't seen those in Canada since I was a kid; a pack of 20 runs about 4.50 euros (about $6 CDN). And another observation about Italians: we all know they gesticulate wildly when talking, but I didn't realize it would still occur when they're on their cell phones too.
The town was very sleepy and it was not hard to take the hint and return to our now-heated accommodations.
We finished the afternoon with cheese and fruit out on the balcony, with me looking forward to an evening call to my mom.
It has been quite the change coming back here after three weeks in Victoria. Many thanks to all of you who passed along your sympathies and thoughts. It was very good for me to be with my family that first week back. Even though it was a hard week preparing for the service, it was best to be together, sharing the tasks, the many memories we had of Dad and our sadness. When Nick and Diana left on Jan 1, Mom and I had the next two weeks together. It was a very good visit and I now find that, happy as I am to be back with Ben and the girls, I miss our chats and Scrabble games. Mom and I try to talk most nights when WIFI allows. While in Victoria, I tried to take advantage of the time to see some friends, even if it was over a photocopier or during an airport trip. It was good to talk with many of you again. Ben and I do miss those times. I also ensured I partook of some of my favorite foods: John's Place bread and soup, Canadian burgers, White Spot milkshakes, large green salads, spinach artichoke dip (thanks, Anne), and, causing much envy in my children, clear, refreshing Victoria water!! (Yes, people, it's all about food.)