The Games Afoot…

As today was Valentine’s Day, I took Paola to Rome. To Rome’s Fiumicino Airport, to be specific. She has flown back to the UK for a week but left me this blog to post…

We had to get up at stupid o’clock to meet the builder and also run through with him what was staying and what needed removing.  The man with the plans, Jary from from the architect’s office, was coming down later with drawings.  The team of three, one of whom is the long haired twin of the builder, got cracking straightaway.  A tube of plastic buckets soon deposited the tiles, walls and screed from the top floor into a truck and by evening, when we popped in to see, it all was looking like a building site.

A friend is also restoring a small house in the same street and has been doing quite a bit of demolition too.  Hers has original beams but all the floors had to be replaced because of rotten joists and the basement was dug out as it was filled with rubble. Further down our road a scaffold and winch is being used by yet another building team, so our little road that has to be reversed into by trucks and vans and residents has been like Wacky Races.  Apparently an elderly resident was moaning about all the building work and how the houses were being destroyed, so our friend pointed out rather firmly that actually quite the opposite was happening and that the building work was restoring and protecting the buildings.  Quite so, but there was quite a lot of dust today and our poor plumber who is working in both our houses must have had to move his van quite a few times today.

Guess what. Yes, another trip to the bathroom centre! This time to sort out the towel rails.  I was just not happy with the choice made by the plumber.  I was also in a state of incredulity to discover how expensive these things are over here.  There is an amazing range of designer/works of art that are apparently radiators and towel rails but prices range from around €800 to over €2,000, even for our titchy bathrooms.  So the ever patient Deborah got out all the catalogues and finally we found a couple that suited and one is an ex-display from them, which we have acquired massively reduced from the list price of, wait for it, €1,160.  Bit of a bargain. Although whether anyone will be able to tell the difference is debatable, but I do love a bargain.

Arrived back in time for an aperitivo with friends in Bar degli Artisti.  I am now drinking Strega with hot water for medicinal purposes.  I think it works quite well.  On to Serenella’s for supper and a plate of roasted veal with potatoes in parsley, followed by a baked apple. Jamie had a pizza.  Our friends had stuffed turkey breast with potatoes and a veal stew with spinach, followed by a tiramisu and baked apple.  All followed by a glass of Serenella’s homemade Limoncello.  She not only makes the Limoncello but also grows the lemons so totally organic.  We drank half a litre of red, bottles of water and coffee all for 10 euros a head.  Not worth cooking and now I understand why Rowena  (the previous owner of our home) ate there twice a day and never had a kitchen!  Even Daisydog got a doggy bag of kitchen scraps to bring home….

Jamie will be in charge of the blog for the next week as I am back in the UK.

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