Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Nats Is Getting Married!

Domenico received the call from our daughter Natalie on his mobile and thought heck what has happened, she would only phone the mobile in an emergency!
A bubbly excited voice on the other end said that Chris had proposed to her whilst they were having a romantic picnic on the beach with the sun setting...aww, he is so sweet. She said she was crying and laughing at the same time and it all felt quite surreal.
I feel so old, our first born getting married !
Chris and Nats have been together for 5 years now since she was 17, we stumbled across them one evening after Domenico and I arrived home after a night out. Domenico walked in on them as they were snuggled up on the sofa, he turned to me with a very concerned look on his face and said 'there is a boy in our house with Nats !' and being the protective father, felt a bit strange. There was nothing to worry about though as Chris is lovely and they are perfect for each other.
So it looks like we will be heading back to New Zealand for the wedding this time next year.
The first thing Domenico said though was 'no bambino's before I'm 50!'

Monday, April 16, 2007

Easter Weekend

We had a lovely Easter weekend this year, Sunday was spent cooking,eating and hanging out with our friends, Nigel and Isalena. We have known N & I since 1985 as they were customers in our first restaurant in New Zealand. Nigel who had just finished his Architect degree took on the job to design and oversee another restaurant we had just bought and when it was finished we bought himself and his girlfriend Isalena an airline ticket to Italy. That was the last we saw of them though we heard that they were living in Rome!
We decided when we arrived here to look them up in the phone book and were thrilled to hear that they were still here after 17 years and with 3 beautiful children. Even after so long it is nice to be able to pick up where we left off, though with Nigels busy schedule (he has just finished working on the controversial Ara Pacus museum project) it is hard for him to find free time.

Easter Monday was spent with friends who were visiting from New Zealand, the girls Madeleine and Frances have been friends with our girls since primary school.
After lunch in Frascati we all trooped off into Rome to show them some of the sights, it was a fabulous warm day and they were in awe at all the History around them (the perfect tourists!).
We finished the day at 'Gusto' our favourite pizzeria, absolutely exhausted.

House Hunting

Sorry for not posting for so long, the past few weeks have been a bit of a roller coaster ride mentally.
We decided a year ago that we wanted to move over to Le Marche, so the past couple of months have seen us going back and forth on a house hunting expedition. I think we have seen every farmhouse possible.
We eventually found one that we loved on top of a hill with 360° views, though when we went to put in an offer we were told that some English people had offered 20,000 euro more than the asking price.
On one of our expeditions which was during a very wet weekend we got bogged down twice in the muck whilst looking at properties,our jeep was proving to be a very unreliable 4 wheel drive!! Another lady in a jeep came to our rescue as we couldn't find a tractor and I think we ended up burning her engine! It was very embarrasing and especially checking into the B & B covered in s****t!
The worst was yet to come, as we were driving back on the autostrada there was a very bad noise coming from the back wheels, Domenico kept telling me not too worry it was nothing! Oh yeah!....3 hours later when we arrived at the toll booth the car behind kept beeping at us, so we decided to pull over. I was in shock to see that we had lost all of the bolts except one holding on the back wheel. I think there was definately someone 'up there' looking after us that day.
After several more weekends we finally found and put an offer on another property which has been accepted subject to us getting finance through. I'm not getting too excited until we have the keys in our hands as I am sure there will be beaurocratic hoops to jump through. One of those being having to change my surname back to my maiden name to satisfy the Italian laws. When we were looking to buy a place in Sicily 2 years ago the Notaio insisted that I couldn't use my married name as it made Domenico and I look like brother and sister,I am sure there must be a way around it. So I am not posting any pics yet until everything is 'cento per cento!!'