In the last week it really feels like summer has begun here in Sicily. The weather is much warmer, obviously, but there are lots of other signs. I have just stepped outside to bring in the laundry from the line and the evening air was all soft and perfumed. The pace of life – never particular speedy at any time – is winding down to the summer rhythm. Children break up from school on Wednesday and families are making plans to move to summer homes by the sea.
The colours of a Sicilian summer are so intense. Never subtle or understated, you get smacked in the eye with deep, vibrant purples, pinks and reds. Oleander bushes grow to enormous heights, providing great walls of colour. The roses here have been a big surprise. Usually not tended or cosseted in any way, they just grow everywhere in great profusion.
Last week we paid a visit to the Anagrafe to transfer our residency. As we are already Italian residents, we thought this would be a relatively simple process. It wasn’t. But, the two ladies who assisted us were so kind and understanding. We all gave a cheer when they presented us with our new residency document covered with the obligatory multiple stamps.
We have been taking the opportunity to stroll around the village in which we live. We have spied a definite candidate for the prettiest car repair garage ever! Where we can, we have peeked at gardens. There are a lot of high walls and gates in Italy, so sometimes you just get hints of the lush foliage growing behind them. That makes them all the more beguiling.
Our walks always take us past the local shops where we can buy something for lunch. We are becoming particularly friendly with the proprietor of the local Panificio. They have been educating us about Italian bread and making good suggestions about Sicilian wines. On Satuday they had a tray with whole onions that had been baked in their skins. They told us to peel and chop one and then add vinegar, olive oil, salt and pepper and serve. It was delicious.
This is the view from our front terrace when we finally reach home. We are completely beguiled by the Sicilian summer. Once it gets unbearably hot and the mosquitoes are fully out in force, I am sure we won’t be quite so starry eyed!
The summer seems to have been have a positive effect on me creatively. I think I am enjoying my latest project more than anything I have done recently. I will post a little more about it soon.