A Christening and never-ending feasts

Trip Start Feb 02, 2010
Trip End Feb 02, 2011

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Flag of Italy  , Tuscany,
Monday, April 12, 2010

Now we are in Italy, it is so strange to me the way over here you can just quickly drive into another country, or even cross many in a day!

We had a good nights' sleep in Slovenia with only one visitor. Sometime in the night, I have no idea what time – only that it was very dark, a black 4WD drove up the path that we were sleeping by, went past us a little, then reversed back to take a closer look, then drove off again. I think most likely someone taking a short cut.

But Italy! We crossed the border at maybe ten AM and rode with only a few short breaks until seven PM when we stopped for dinner in a small town on the edge of the Appenine Mountains called Forli. All day we had been trying to call Felix’s friend Stefano who we were hoping to stay with. Finally when we called one last time after dinner, expecting we would be sleeping in the mountains, he answered and welcomed us completely. So we rode the last one hundred and eighteen tortuously winding but extraordinarily beautiful kilometres over the mountains in three hours, arriving in Pian Di Sco’ just past midnight. The second daughter of Stefano and his wife Iselin was to be baptised the next morning – Sunday morning. It was quite an amazing coincidence that we had arrived the night before the Christening - not knowing it was on this day, or even that it was happening at all in fact - because Felix had first met Stefano and Iselin in Norway two years earlier when he turned up at the Christening of their first daughter. When Stefano answered the phone he said he knew it would be us.

When we arrived in Pian Di Sco’ Stefano came running out to meet us. Because of the Christening, friends and family from all over had come to visit, so we couldn’t actually stay with him but he took us down the road to stay with Damiano, a friend Felix already knew and where already another friend of Stefano (Elias) was staying as well.

In the morning when I woke up I had a big black cloud around my head. I was shamefully disrespectful at the Christening sitting with my arms crossed and making rude jokes. There were so many babies and young children with their happy looking parents there and this really stresses me out. Felix always talks about having children and always thinks every baby and small child is so beautiful and adorable and although there is no pressure intended, I feel pressured to want to have a baby and I really am not ready, I feel completely terrified at the idea. Surrounded by so many happy mothers and fathers I feel like everyone is saying "see, see, it’s great, it’s fine" and all I feel is like “get away from me with your exploding breasts and swashy la la la goo goo peaceful happiness.” The whole morning totally freaked me out. When I’m a little more mature and ready I’m sure having a baby will be wonderful, until then I’ll leave it to everyone else.

Through Felix eyes that were not so clouded, it was a beautiful event. To these people a Christening is one of the most momentous events in a person’s life. The church in which the Christening was held was a beautiful old building that now also runs as a home for disadvantaged single mothers. The service was naturally in Italian so we understood nothing except the frequent singing of Hallelujah and beautiful live music. After the service all the friends and family went to a room under the church for an absolute feast of different cakes and desserts. People brought presents and the Christened baby Sira was passed around and then held aloft as a toast was made to her.  

After the Christening we went to Stefano and Iselin’s house for some pre-lunch bread and Prosciutto, I started to cheer up and feel much less overwhelmed among less people and noise.

We went to Pietro and Miriam’s house – more of Felix’s and now my friends, after pre-lunch for the main lunch. I really enjoyed meeting Pietro and Miriam, and of course spending the afternoon and what turned into the next day too, with them. They had cooked a simple but lovely pasta and tomato sauce for lunch. Some other friends were there and we looked for wild plants to eat, walked around the dam behind the house with ducks and hundreds of tadpoles and did some archery. It seemed it hadn’t been long since lunch before it was dinnertime. These Italians just eat and eat and eat and I haven’t seen one fat one yet. People that never get fat no matter how much they eat make me so fucking annoyed.

By the late hour dinner was finished I was totally ready to sleep. We were going to stay with Pietro and Miriam. But suddenly all these people arrived. There were about twelve people in the small room that is the living room, kitchen and everything else. I couldn’t keep my eyes open, I fell asleep among all the noise and only woke up for a few minutes to say goodbye when everyone left and we rolled out a bed.

So today we slept in a long time. Ah, back to the life of sleeping until midday again – for a few days anyway. Today has been so nice; I have really enjoyed the company of Miriam, Pietro and their little daughter Arianna. They seem to live with a real joy for life. It is hard in some ways for me to be around people with such joy and happiness because it is so difficult for me to find these feelings truly in myself lately, but it is so infectious to be around them, their warmth and liveliness makes me really smile and laugh. We spent the afternoon eating – again, just after breakfast – and sitting in the garden, listening to another friend play guitar very beautifully and doing hand-stands, cartwheels and yoga tricks while Arianna ran around the fresh spring garden with the throng of children that had appeared out of everywhere. It has been a really good day, for now I have forgotten my worries and feel happy.
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Virgil Cameron on

Ahh, Floss, thanks for this charming and honest update!

It made me laugh out loud to read.

It is heart warming to think that being amongst the friends of Julie's and my best friends Stefano and Iselin can infect you (eventually) with happiness. That's the way that Julie and I have felt being with Iselin and Stefano and their friends - their love of life is certainly infectious and inspiring! We look forward to being in Italy too (later this year?!?) and getting to know all these friendly people.

Any chance of some more photos from Pian di Sco???

Love to you and Flexi!

John and Yuki on

Thanks for the stories Floss and Flexi. I have just caught up on the recent ones. Good luck with the ups and downs, and try some truffle pasta if possible. Please also send our love to Stefano and Iselin.

Clancy asked me yesterday: when will Felix and Floss come home? I said in months. He said "before my birthday?", no after. "Oh, must be on Leo's birthday then!" (they're 2 days apart). He then said we should just get on a plane next time we go to the airport and fly to Europe to see you. I said not likely. But we think of you always.

I am getting an ipad tomorrow, so will read your next blog on that :-).

Love from John

Julie on

Delightful writing! I have been laughing a lot too...just like John.

And I especially liked when you wrote: "and all I feel is like "get away from me with your exploding breasts and swashy la la la goo goo peaceful happiness." Ha, ha! That is so funny! Good on you, Floss...don't let anyone make you feel pressured...no need to rush and no point until YOU feel ready (and by the way...it might seem like just all peaceful happiness when you are celebrating in beautiful Spring weather...but I can assure you it is not always like that).

Lots of love to you both!

Looking forward to further reading ;o)

Maria and Edwin on

To get Eddie's comment in first: "Tell them to take some pictures of some gardens!" he says. I'm not even sure if you're still in Italy or if you've already left for London - but just in case...

You had us both touched and laughing out aloud with this entry, Floss.

One question: I thought you were staying with Giovanni? Haven't heard anything yet about him in the blog, so am I confused about this?

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