My first opportunity to view my house again in its entirety!! I awoke early but not too early with the intention of getting to the house early and getting things in order. In the end I went for a walk through the largely abandoned but picturesque town of Navelli with the young man from Pompeii. By the time we had a good look around the wonderful old architecture (much of it medieval) it was after 11am. We said our goodbyes as he was returning back to his Funghi business – not an easy job he rises everyday at 3am to pick his mushrooms and take them to market!!
I headed off what I thought was the direction of a Petrol Station and ended up in the beautiful hilltop town of Capestrano by which time it was after midday. I decided to take a brief stroll through the village and a few random photos then stopped at the cantina for a Panini and San Pelligrino. The local dogs watched me with great interest as I devoured my lunch without giving into their pleading eyes!
Unfortunately for them I wasn’t prepared to share on this occasion – maybe next time!
Then I attempted to get petrol from a local Esso but it seemed everyone was still having their lunch so I went onwards to my little house in Ofena. On arrival I had a slight fight with the door – it turned out the house had been left unlocked and on inspection of the interior the lovely dresser and small table had been taken – an obvious disappointment to me.
Some small treasures were still left behind – a number of old chairs in need of stripping, restoring and reseating, a number of old bottles including the large traditional wine bottles in their cane baskets, as well as a few pieces of old china.
I started sweeping the floors and checked to see what was on the floor in the bathroom where the terrazzo had fallen in. To my surprise here too was original marble flooring, so I have 3 rooms with these which will look great once polished up to their former glory!
A local called Roberto whom I met the last time I was in Ofena stopped by promising to help me clean-up if I would go to the local bar for adrink with him the local is called Bar Aufinium. We had a drink and I met a few more of the locals then Roberto needed something from a hardware store in a nearby village. Not wanting to seem rude I agreed to go with him to Popoli where it turned out the Hardware store was closed and would reopen at 4pm. We went off for espresso and wandered about – time is not so important in Italy it’s more of a concept and in true Italian fashion it was nearly 4:30pm by the time the store opened and what Roberto was seeking there was not to be found. I felt a little frustrated with my day, the sun was now starting to head closer to the hills and soon there would be no light to do anything at the house.
Another detour was offered with the promise we could work at the house tomorrow (domani) – domani is a word you hear a lot in Italy. Everything will be done, will arrive, will be ready or available domani! I decided not to stress and agreed to our next diversion –a trip to the local Trout and Gambieri (Yabbie or freshwater cray) Farm for Roberto to get some trout. It was I must admit an interesting journey and it’s a shame I have no photos of the alien-like gambieri to show you but I promise I will go there again for you another day!!
After some hair-raising Italian driving back to my house I said ‘Ciao’ to Roberto and promised to call him domani! I jumped into my rental car and headed back to Navelli debating whether I wanted Roberto’s assistance with the house but also not wanting to offend a local. Stopped by and filled the car up on the way.
As always the Abruzzo Segreto was abuzz with people, an Irish couple had stayed the night as they were over from Ireland for a long weekend to work on their renovation project. We had a good chat altogether and shared a few glasses of red wine together. After they departed I decided to have a simple meal of local salami and cheeses – I did not have the energy to head out for a meal at one of the local trattorias.
After a long day I was grateful to rest up until the next day!