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Buona Pasqua

Today was Easter and we had quite an Italian experience.  Easter is really big here.  They start the week before with all the Holy Week celebrations.  School is out and there’s a very festive atmosphere.  And Monday is a national holiday.

We went to Michelangelo and Rossella’s for Easter lunch.  The day was perfect – nice and warm with a gentle breeze.   We sat out in their garden for antipasti and prosecco.

Cathy, Anna, Rossella, Steve
Cathy, Anna, Rossella, Steve

It’s the antipasti that does me in.  I always eat too much of it and then get full.  I still eat all my meal, but I would enjoy it much more if I weren’t groaning from the strain of my pants trying to contain my ever expanding girth.  I’d love to tell you what we had, but I don’t know the names of anything.  Capicola – I know we had that.  Then some little puff pastry things, some stuffed with cheese, some with liver, some with tomatoes.  Kind of like bruschetta but in pastry instead of on bread.  Then some kind of cheese bread that is typical of this area.  Wonder why I got full?

The happiest man in the world
The happiest man in the world

Then inside for lunch.  Pasta with cinghiale sauce, roasted lamb, roasted potatoes, roasted onions, grilled sausage, and salad.  Dessert – columba (the special Easter cake that tastes like the special Christmas cake), ciaccia dolce, and a semifreddo.  Yes, that’s right, three desserts.  And a hunk of a chocolate egg.  They have big eggs here like we have chocolate bunnies.

Anna is a social worker at a children’s home and she had to work last night.  She worked from 9:30 pm to 8:30 am.  After this feast, she went to bed.  Michelangelo, Steve, Millie and I went for a little walk through the country.

Millie in an olive grove
Millie in an olive grove

What a beautiful place they have.  It’s up a hill above Citta di Castello and has incredible views everywhere you look.  You’re just minutes from town, but you really feel like you’re out in the country.  Well, you are out in the country.  Very tranquil and relaxing.

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Late in the afternoon, we went to Easter mass at a basilica on the very top of a mountain nearby.  Very beautiful.  All in Italian and Latin, so I didn’t really understand much, but it was beautiful all the same.  On the way back home we had a lively discussion about the differences in Catholics and Baptists.  And about whether Melania Trump really had 60 Christmas trees in the White House.

This was one of those days that we’ll remember forever.  Everything was perfect.  The weather, the food, the conversation, the company – even Millie had a wonderful time.  When we got home she went straight to bed and slept the sleep of a contented canine.  And I’m sure we will do the same.

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