I’m the weatherman…

Frankfurt hi 7, lo 0
Pisa hi 18, lo 1

hahahahahah…..wait….why am I laughing? I have to ride to work in the morning with a half flat tire, and a half broken pedal….ugh….I hope nothing breaks before I get to work….

bizarro convenience store and bizarro wine…

I’m not sure which to write about first…

So the other day I’m walking the neighborhood and I note that there is a sort of convenience store/meat and cheese shop in around the corner. It was the weekend so it was closed, but I looked in the windows like a stalker and saw that they have some necessities like laundry detergent (which I need soon), wine, crackers, milk etc. They also had some things I don’t need such as…large chunks of dried ham, cheese, fresh fruit and vegetables…This seems the oddest combination of items found in a small store that I’ve ever seen. It’s a butcher shop that sells wine and laundry detergent. So the coffee shops sell cigarettes and lotto tickets, and the butcher shops sell laundry detergent…got it! Welcome to Italy. Where you have to go to 5 stores per day just to get by 😉
Anyway since I’m now carless (and bike-ful) I can’t really be bothered going to Carrefour (the gigantic wal mart equivalent) because Carrefour is too far away from home to carry a bunch of crap via cycle. So now I’m shopping and eating locally.
I picked up a bottle of wine and some cookies (with smiley faces on them) at the semi-butcher shop on the way home (mmmm. Why hello healthy lifestyle)…and it turns out the wine I bought is some sort of sparkling red wine that cost 2.30€. It’s not very good, but I’ll probably drink it anyways…

Which reminds me that the Carrefour does have TWO bottles of wine available for 0.99€ each, and another choice for a mere 1.09€. I guess they have no taxes on the alcohol or something. I’ve not tried the cheap wine, but that combined with the free appetizers when you buy a drink might just make this a homeless persons paradise. Think about it…if you were homeless you could roll out from under your tree sometimes around 10am. Take your dog to the city center. beg for a bit…cash your homeless citizen check. buy a bottle of 0.99€ wine for the afternoon. Take a nap about 2 and get up again at 6pm. Take 4€ and go find a place that has free appetizers (when you buy a drink) pick up another 0.99€ bottle of wine for the evening and just pet your homeless dog for 6 hours until you fall asleep again…In the summer you could hit a free beach and nap there for a few hours…ahhh paradise.

I’ve not seen any homeless people in this town so I guess Italy is doing a fine job with generating jobs or something.

…Today I roll out of bed early (guess who woke me up? – clomp clomp CLOMP) and I look out the window to note very dark skies out over the sea….It’s not raining yet, but obviously will soon. I did my most amazing superhero quick change and roll out to work immediately in hope of beating the rain…I did by about 2 minutes…and it rained HARD for a few hours, but by the time I got off work the sun was completely out. The only clouds I saw were up on the mountains (someday I’ll take a video so everyone can understand microclimate) and it’s beautiful again except for a bit of wind.
I mentioned before the weather similiarites to Oregon and this was another one. A complete change from one type of weather day to a completely different type of day (and it took less than a day). Amazing.
In Frankfurt this didn’t really happen. It would sometimes go from bad to worse, but you could basically tell from the time you got up what the day was going to be like. I am quite liking it here…not just the weather is great, but the Italians are being super nice to me and making me feel welcome etc.
I think it’s going well and I’m getting settled (just in time to have to move).

I guess on the proverbial to-do list for the week is make contact with the housing agency to see if I can find a rental in the next week weeks. Hopefully can start looking this week or next. Also am going to sign up for a doctor tomorrow (I guess the equivalent of a primary care physician as we’d say in the states)…

I’ve also read that Italy recently passed a law that allows them to censor blogs and anything else they want to….ummmm…..while that might be an exaggeration I would just like to state for the record….I love Italy!!!! I also sincerely believe that Berluscony is the greatest leader Italy has ever seen (but then I’m a yank and the only other leader of Italy that I could name would be ummmm….. Mussoliny)…damn! I just mentioned Berluscony and Mussoliny in the same sentence…I’m not comparing them, just pointing out my ignorance about former italian leaders…and how I’m hoping to grow in my knowledge of this culture and learn stuff…and stuff…
For the record I intentionally mispelled their names so this doesn’t show up in search engines… 😀 paranoid yanks!!!!
…and I really do like it here 🙂

shopping and weather…

Managed to find some more wintery type clothes. Got a hoody, long sleeve t shirt, socks and a pair of pants. Riding my bike home was a struggle as I had planned to buy a backpack at the store, but the backpacks they had were either hot pink or too small, so I bought a shoulder bag and put as much in it as I could and carried the rest in the plastic bag. Not so easy to ride a bike with a bag in your hand. I think last time I did that was when I broke Shauns bike because the picture frames got caught in the wheel 🙂
This entry just isn’t mundane enough. My weekends are obviously not exciting. Someone come entertain me.

…and this site is pretty good I think. At least for those of us working for learn italian: http://becomingitalianwordbyword.typepad.com/becomingitalian/

Today was a gorgeous day. I’m going to love the winters here. I was talking with my boss (I have two people that I refer to as my boss – I’ll differentiate by referring to them  by their nationalities)…my german boss about the weather the other day and the weather here of late reminds me a bit of living in Coquille (near the coast on Southern Oregon). The best weather was always in the winter between storms. A winter storm would come through and for a couple days it would be clear and sometimes quite warm. I think it will be the same here, but the storms will not last as long (one day instead of 3), and the time between storms will hopefully be long. However it’s only October so I’m probably not qualified to make predictions like that (I’m the weatherman).

it's going to be hot today, and I'm already preparing people to expect me to complain.

I uploaded some more Köln pics (link on the right) stolen from Matt, and grabbed a couple more off Kat (below).

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