Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Alcara li Fusi

So, I was back on the bus again. This time we headed to Alcara li Fusi. This town is celebrating it's Patron Saint Nicolò Politi's 500th year of sainthood. It goes on for a full year. It was made even more special as Alcara li Fusi is where the local priest, Padre Luigi was born. The town folks and Padre Luigi's family were most welcoming. They have a great love for this man.

We started walking thru the town starting at the statue of St Nicolò and ending up at the church which holds some of his remains. Along the way we had several on lookers from the overhead balconies and some of the towns folks joined us at the church.

The local priest gave an overview of St Nicolò Politi's life and the events of this 500th Anno Giubilare. It is a year long celebration of his sainthood 1507/2007.

Nicolò was born in 1117, of noble parents. He was their only child, born to them in their later years. He was given the best of education, both cultural and spiritual. While he was still young his father found him a future wife and even prepared a wedding for them. Nicolò escaped his town and his wedding and took up a life of solitude in the mountains of Etna. Later, he traveled to Alcara li Fusi and made his home in a cave for over 30 years. He lived a life of solitude and prayer contemplating on the mystery of God.

In 1507 the Pope of that time gave permission for his body to be transferred to the Chiesa Madre di Alcari. However in the 1920's the citizens of Adrano petitioned the government to have his remains taken to his birth town. We were told that militia came to the town of Alcara li Fusi and forced the people to remain inside their homes while Nicolò's head was taken and carried to Adrano where it still remains. This means that the torso remains of St Nicolò is in Alcara li Fusi but his skull is in Adrano.

There is also a Museum of Sacred Art in this town. It at one time was a convent for females. Now it has been converted to a religious showing of gold and silver art pieces. It includes a library of hand written documents dating back to the 1500's. The story of St Nicolò is also presented in this museum. On the wall were several documents showing tributes and donations made by Sicilians who emigrated from Alcara Li Fusi to Cleveland, Ohio in the USA.

We headed just before dusk, to the cave where St Nicolò Politi spent over 30 years of his life. The roads were narrow and I was amazed at the skill of our bus driver to maneuver these streets.

We arrived at the grotto and you can get a sense of the time of day from the following two photos which were taken ten minutes apart.

I would imagine these hills would be a good place to hide out from the law. Perhaps Salvatore Giuliano hid out here???

The cave was lit up with some festive lights which gave one person in our group to mention how religion was becoming a big business. Well, what isn't these days. Padre Luigi gave a short sermon here and after taking a group picture we headed back down the narrow streets and twisting mountains.. towards home.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Happy Birthday Ava!

Little Ava is two today!! Happy Birthday to my youngest grandchild!


Friday, October 26, 2007

Friday Feature....Animal Market

This guy has the whole market in his scope. Every year in nearby Falcone there is an animal market. Farm folks from nearby towns transport their animals for sale here. Not so many animals this year. Seems that new regulations are in place. I like this market and was happy to get there early enough to see the animals. I hope you enjoy this picture post of the mercato.



Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Stan and Ollie

Their names were Stan and Ollie and they had some time together before they became......


I had nothing to do with this....nothing!

Monday, October 22, 2007

Red Card Yellow Card

Yellow plus yellow equals red. Red is red. All calcio and soccer fans know this. One yellow is a warning concerning a rule infraction. Red is given for a major infraction. So, if you get two warnings it is the same as getting a red. But getting a red with no warning indicates major consequences.

I like this idea. It leaves almost nothing to the imagination. Altho some players argue the call, everyone knows the rules. Everyone can see the yellow or red card being held aloft by the referee. Everyone knows that first yellow is a warning and you had best be on your good behavior or you risk getting a red card and that means O U T!

I think that this colored card system could be put to good use elsewhere. My first thought was for teachers and parents. But, I really think it would be good to have them in the car. Instead of using those hand signals when you are miffed by another driver you could just hold up a yellow or red card. It might even work in the post office when you get bad service..or quite a few public offices. How about the toll booth taker who acts like you are bothering his smoking break?

Join in with me...with your ideas!

Friday, October 19, 2007

Friday Feature

West Side Story has it ALL wrong! The most beautiful sound is your child saying *I love you Mom*! Ask any mother. Ask me...and I will tell you that what I write is true. I received this card this week and it couldn't have come at a better time. I love you too, Jillane!

Along with the card was a bevy of packages. Of course the mandatory Starbucks coffee was included. My favorite was the gardenia scented duo of hand wash and hand cream. Along with vanilla, gardenia is a favorite scent of mine.

This daughter knows I am a lover of bumper stickers. She has been riding the roads with this one tucked into her visor for over a year. It was given to me by my son, who doesn't even know I harbor this fetish. I am hoping some day to cover my terrazza window that borders onto my neighbor's wall with various bumper stickers. Finally it has arrived here.

So, Frank did you think this ball would be amusing? Papa was very amused. After unrolling all this paper he challenged me to put it back together. Yea, right!
That accordion card was ...a reminder of how much I hate the accordion. But, someone really liked it!

Yes...I am happy and I am thankful and I am loving you all.

This is Friday's Feature!!

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

My All time Favorite Blog Page


AllohafromSicily posted this page and she captured the look 100%!! I love this post! Check it out!


So what is this treasure? And is it truly a treasure? Italo Americans that visit here think so. They bring it back into the USA by the suitcase full. Italy readers know what it is but for my USA people, this is baked ricotta. You can slice and eat it with bread or grate it over pasta dishes, soups and risotto. I do think you can oven bake ricotta at home. I haven't yet found someone who will tell me how this is done. I imagine a slow oven.

This one looks a bit over baked but it tastes just right. A lady gave this to me because I printed out some pictures of the Gibelmanna gita for her. I didn't need a reward but it is the custom here.

Monday, October 15, 2007


My camera has been sidelined by a back sprain the past few days. So, I came up with an idea to play a game my sister loves. I have two sisters and the one who loves this game knows who she is!!

It is called look into the cabinets and see what the people in this house are eating. I'm game!

This is the bottom of the beverage shelves. All my shelves have a mix of Italian and USA products. Added this week is some coffee grounds from Germany. Last year the gentleman who gave this package to us brought Jacob's coffee. This one is just as good. The zip lock bag holds various types of tea bags. The red can in the rear says Natural Cider. I have not tried it yet, but I think it will be a winter treat. Ciobar can be a hot chocolate drink or I think a pudding. Depends on how long you keep it on the fire. Andy grinds the coffee so we have two types. One espresso and the other regular coffee. Hiding behind the taller goods is a jar of instant Nescafe left to us by USA friends. It is recipe coffee.

These two shelves hold baking goods. I have several different types of flour, corn meal, white and brown sugars, icing sugar, molasses sugar, baking powder, baking soda, dry milk, coconut flakes..plus chick beans and dried peas and a couple types of rice, stored here. In the can is some chocolate bits. Andy keeps the grinder here. It is always neat and tidy. I hate bugs and this would be bug heaven.

There are lots of USA products in here. Thank you ..to my family and friends who share with me. This is just the place my sister would be looking. Now, if she wants a glimpse in my refrigerator she will need an airline ticket to come an check that out herself. That is a good idea!

Saturday, October 13, 2007


That is me reporting that the Red Sox won game 1 in the AL pennant race.

The other update is that RaiUno has *maybe* changed it's schedule for tomorrow and Oliveri will be featured next Sunday.

Friday, October 12, 2007

Friday Feature

Double Friday Feature notices:

Reminder for my USA readers>

The Boston Red Sox and the Cleveland Indians open with game one.. vying for the American League Champion, this evening at 7PM in Boston.

For my Italian readers>

Sunday on RaiUno, the tuna festival held last month in Oliveri will be featured on Linea Verde. As for the time I am told after 10AM.