Thursday, December 20, 2007

School Christmas Program

I've put up a little Youtube video of the kids singing and here are a couple of pictures. I've seen a lot of these Christmas programs over the years and these here are pretty typical of the ones in the US.

Life in Italy

What is it like living here. Maybe I should write a little about our life in general here, and also compare it to how our life was in the US. To a great degree it's not so different. In part because the daily routine wherever one lives has certain common elements, kids off to school, work, preparing meals, making order in the home, etc. One major difference here from San Diego of course is the weather. There the temperature did not vary that much from month to month but here of course it does, we have real seasons here. Another big difference is the amount of time we spend in the car. We have carried some of our California habits with us, so we tend to take the car and go to the grocery store for example that is 10 minutes away where they have a bigger selections and lower prices than the store we can walk to. And we buy for a week rather than going every day like Luisa's mom does. However, even so a tank of gas lasts us 2 or 3 weeks at least where as on our recent trip to San Diego we filled up the gas tank 4 times in two weeks.

Where we live the city, Belluno, is nice but it is not one of the prettiest of Italian cities. What makes it beautiful here are the surroundings, we are surrounded by mountains, forests, rivers and beautiful valleys. In every direction from here there are lots of outdoor activities. Of course in Winter the sport is skiing.

I will make this a bit of a running commentary, so I'll write more later.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Web Site Hijacked

My domain name got hijacked, stolen as far as I'm concerned. Maybe the time for renewal was up but I did not get a notice and now I find out that someone else owns the name. I'm guessing people do this as a business. They watch names ready to expire and jump on them hoping the owner will want to buy it back at a much higher price. Well I was thinking it might have given a bit too much personal information about where we live and so on so maybe it's better that it's gone for now. But the whole idea of it is very disturbing.

Friday, December 14, 2007

The War on Iraq

One of my daughters has a step son in the Marine reserves. I'm just told he has volunteered for active duty and will be sent to Iraq. He is such a nice young man and I am pleased, and proud of his courage and commitment to the defense of our country.

But I have been opposed to this war from the beginning that has waisted the lives of some 4,000 US troops and killed undreds of thousands of Iraqi men, women and children. It makes me so sad to see him sucked into it. I just hope and prey that he makes it through this and comes home alive, in one peace, and is not destroyed mentally for the rest of his life.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Our Christmas Tree

I didn't know where to go to find a tree here in Belluno, it's not like they have tree lots all over town. But I left with the kids thinking it was going to take a couple of hours and we might not even find one. Well about two blocks from our house at the local flower shop we saw some sitting out front. I imagined the price would be out of site. But hey they were only 18 euro. I grabbed the first one I saw and we were home in 15 minutes.

Now the tree is decorated, it's not a work of art but I love all the decorations that have been collected and added over the years. Many were made by my kids, the grown ones when they were 4 and 5 years old and now my little ones have added to the collection. There is one I found from a friend I went to college with, Bill Catron, back in 1970. Others given to my daughters 20 and more years ago. It makes a tree full of happy memories and reminds me of what Christmas is about, love of family and friends and the birth or our Lord .

Giovanni turns 6

We had a regular sit down dinner for a bunch of 6 year olds.


My grandaughter Davis, doesn't she look Swiss and beautiful! Well she's not Swiss but she does live in Switzerland.

Monday, December 3, 2007

Italian Families

What do I know about them. Some I guess. What I like right off which some expats don't is that whenever you leave or come home unless it was just a trip to the super market it's a big deal. You get a big send off when you leave and a big welcome back when you return with all the kisses and hugs. It's great. Another thing is that there is always this level of excitement when everyone is together, always two or three conversations going on at the same time.

Another thing I like are Italian mothers, yes they baby their kids too much and a lot of Italian kids are whinney cry babies, but still the moms are great. If you have any Italian friends outside Italy have you noticed how the these Italian moms greet little kids when you arrive at their house or when arriving at a get together, it's all full of joy and affection even for the kids they have just met. My wife she's a great Italian mom, always there for her kids too much in my American opinion because she just gets too tired, when they go to bed she is usually so tired she just drops off on the couch. Even after working all day, she doesn't short change them, and I think this is pretty typical.

I will write more on this subject.


I've decided there are two types of politicians, both types are corrupted by the system that demands that they accept money from those would influence their decisions. But there is a difference in the two types. Type one is only interested in furthering their own wealth, and power. Everything they do has really only that goal. Examples would be G.W. Bush in the US and Berlusconi in Italy. Type two, though not without the first goal of gaining wealth and power is actually interested in governing as well. They want to do what is right for their countries and want to go down in history as having done a good job. Examples of the type two are Pradi in Italy and the Clintons in the US. We could name many on either side of the conservative vs. liberal issue. The two types exist in both camps. I think our difficult goal as voters should be to separate the two types and only vote for type two. The type ones destroy our countries, the type twos while making mistakes at least give us a government that is somewhat democratic.

Blog Comments

Seems that about 15 people a day look at my blog, not a lot but at least there is some interest. The thing is that few people make comments. I'd like to hear from those of you who come here. Tell my why you came, what interests you etc.