Well, Day 1, Friday. We relaxed at the villa, enjoying a day of rest after the long day on trains, boats and automobiles. A short trip into Cingoli, twice, actually, to get provisions (we can’t seem to remember that everything is closed from noon or 1:00 p.m until 4:00 or 5:00 p.m. any day, no matter whether the store is filled with things we need or just things we want.) While we waited for the supermercato to open again, we walked down the street a block to watch a group of old Italian men playing bocce ball in the park. They seem to gather every weekday afternoon to throw those little Italian “bowling balls” down the course. Sort of a cross between bowling and pool.
At 5:00 p.m., the supermercato opened its doors, I wandered around with my list, trying to decipher the various commodities. Was this dishwasher soap or clothes washing soap? Was this really hot chocolate mix or chocolate pudding, as it seemed to appear on the box? Why is there milk on the shelves as well as milk in the cold cases? And which one is skim, which one is whole milk, which is cream? Often it’s a matter of making an intuitive choice and hoping for the best, but as an adventure, it’s worth any errors I make in my choices.
And the men and women behind the “deli” cases, where all meat, fish, and cheeses are selected and lovingly sliced and packaged . . . well, there are no errors there. I only have to point, say “Questo qui . . . ” (“this one here”), pantomime how big a cheese wedge, or say in my numero-Italian how many slices, and my wish is granted.
Home after a visit to the farmacia for triple-antibiotic cream, to make one of my traveler’s blisters heal more quickly, and I’m on the windy nearly-unpaved road back to Avenale and our villa, Casa Frances. For dinner . . . some of what I purchased today and some of the leftovers from our delicious dinner last night.
Until tomorrow . . . a visit to San Marino!