Guests in and out…

IMG_1056The Canadians have come & gone. Guest Group #2 for 2014. Nice folk. 2 real nice adult parents. The 5 in total hail from Edmonton, Alberta Canada. If anyone knows about this rather large northern city, it comes from flying over its urban sprawl on the way to or from the Orient. Otherwise, it is off the Traditional Tourist Map. The City of Calgary gets that traffic. It’s Nearer to the Rockies.

This Edmonton father had found Il Poggiolo on the Internet. I was in the Fivizzano hospital recuperating from My Hip-op at the time and could not reply to his repeated inquiries. Then, My Email-box flipped out totally. His emails bounced back to Canada. Later, one night in October, the cellphone rang at 10PM… Who dares to disturb My Peace at this late hour?… while I lolly-gagged in the comfort of My Convalescent Single-bed… post-op… in the salotto of La Casa Grande. It was the Edmonton Father attempting a more active type of contact. We chatted for while and he then booked the entire house for his family trip four months hence. I said My Good-byes by expressing my appreciation for his tenacity. Occasionally, he would send me a monthly photo-update of the grill in his backyard under 12 feet of white, a thermometer registering some unbelievable temp below 0 Centigrade. What compels people to live in… well, never mind.

No time at all had passed before the 5 stumbled out of a black FIAT 500L on the Medieval bridge of Codiponte. A bloated vehicle full of moulded suitcases on rollers. What else to do but roll up to Il Poggiolo for them to take possession of La Casa Padronale for their four-day visit to Our Lunigiana Neighborhood.

This is mean of me but, this family’s visit confirmed My Father’s Unbending Rule… Better to leave the kids at home. Even ones over the age of 20. Seemed to me that the 3 youngins had a hard time rallying with any true enthusiasm for the hunt, so to speak. You know, Tower of Pisa, Le Cinque Terre, Lucca, Lerici, for cryin’ out loud!!! Must have been overly burdened by jet-lag and the eight-hour time difference. Well, I hope that was the problem. I had the impression that Coca-Cola, iphones & sleeping were their priorities.

Not so with the adults! Cool to enjoy, hang-out, chat, drink wine, hit the road and explore. Easy to talk with, entertaining with their curiosity… in me, nel Poggiolo and in Italy, naturally. The Edmonton Father was a particularly interesting character to me, shooting the breeze while waiting for his troops to marshall themselves into action… ex-rocker, shifted over to lounge/bar pianist… what with those 2 youngins… and now, is a video & graphics specialist with a large church organization active with charities in Africa & South America & SE Asia. He had some great stories to tell. Mostly with the local authorities and his video-camera. Italy is a safer better. Well, it is if you manage not to antagonize a Carabinieri… ha-ha-ha!

And then, in no time, the 5 piled back into the bloated FIAT and drove off for the next stop… Pisa Airport for EasyJet to London-Luton Airport… before heading home to Canada three days later. I was left with returning the furniture to its rightful place, doing 7 loads of laundry and restoring order, generally, throughout. The Trials of Hospitality. Gads.


I hope they come back. Gads.