Talking in tongues

Quintessentially about me.
Everyone should have their own blog to stake out a part of the web and make it their own.

Postcards from Sicily: Piazza Armerina market stalls

Postcards from Sicily: Piazza Armerina market stalls

Piazza Armerina market stall

Piazza Armerina in the province of Enna deep in the bellybutton of Sicily is still filled with traditions which are slowly disappearing in other parts of Sicily. Visiting the agricultural markets (or fairs) used to give you the opportunity to see animals and products from all around the islands, however this market no longer happens, banned as of two thousand and seven after many generations,…

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Embezzlement in Sicily

Detail of Messina town hall

Fraud is the white-collar crime of choice in Sicily, not to say all Sicilian’s are charlatans or fraudsters but some cunning criminal minds enjoy stealing money from the state and the regional government. When an intricate web of deceit is discovered in the local news I am constantly in awe of the blatant audacity and ultimate creativity of the criminals. I mean could they really think to get…

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Postcards from Sicily: Fiera Piazza Armerina

Postcards from Sicily: Fiera Piazza Armerina

Piazza Armerina markets

I have a soft spot for Sicilian open air markets, you never know what you will find. Every town has a market day where traveling salesmen set up their stalls to sell everything from household goods, groceries, fruit and vegetable, toys and clothes. Here is a one Euro stand which has attracted some men into the world of shopping at Piazza Armerina near Enna as it was filled with manly things like…

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Towns cradled by Etna

Towns cradled by Etna

Clear view of Etna in winter
Clear view of Etna in winterI’ve been asked several times about the dangers of the Mount Etna volcano in Sicily. Over the past decade Etna has been relatively active opening several new openings in spectacular lava flowing fountains and fire works, but the province of Messina is distant enough to hear the stories and watch the news without being directly involved. Etna isn’t only one mammoth mountain but volcanologists say…

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How to peel a fico d’india

How to peel a fico d’india

Sicilian Prickly Pears

The exotic prickly pear (fico d’india) is a delicacy in Sicily and thrives around the entire island. Known also as the Barbary fig (opuntia ficus-indica) it is a species of cactus cultivated throughout the world in arid and semiarid areas and is thought to be native to Mexico. It is best to taste them after the first rains as the plant soaks up the water immediately which fattens the fruit…

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Hope you had a good summer …

Hope you had a good summer …

I think I may have inadvertently led people to believe I had a wonderful summer lazing around the beach and traveling around Sicily. In reality I had a terrible summer, every time I tried to go to the beach it was friggin freezing and in August my mother in law spent the month in hospital at Taormina which meant I was helping out at my in-laws, taking 2 hour stomach churning car trips back and…

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Falling into Sicily

Autumn

Autumn in Sicily

The beginning of Autumn in Sicily can be abrupt. The gradual changes from one season to the next are now a thing of the past, there are no more slightly shortening days or time for the leaves to go from greens, yellows, warm rusty reds or browns, now the fall begins with heavy rains and cool nights, whenever the gods decide. One day you are sun bathing on the beach and the next you are pulling on…

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A September song

I was recently asked via twitter about what there is to be done in September in Sicily. The truth is just as many things as you can do at any time of the year, it probably is a good month to visit the island as the holiday ‘high season’ is well and truly over and if the weather holds it is so much more pleasant compared to the stifling heat of August. Feel free to do all the same things as you…

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The toilet situation in Italy

The toilet situation in Italy

Cosi toilets in Italy post
This month C.O.S.I tackles the difficult topic of toilets in Italy … no you really need to know this kinda stuff if you ever visit, it’s make or break here and it may save your life! ***Warning this post contains images of Italian toilets, bad double entendre and Australian slang***

Cosi toilets in Italy post

I have never understood the reason behind the lack of public toilets in major Italian cities as you would…

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Five things never to do in August in Sicily

Five things never to do in August in Sicily

images-5

There are five things I would never do in August in Sicily! 1) Don’t get any heavy dental work done, as you will be suffering a toothache until your dentist gets back from his cruise on the islands.

 

2) If you are a woman don’t go into labor as you will be delivering your child on your own as your gynecologist will be at the beach. 3) Don’t get sick or hurt yourself seriously as you will be…

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Flamboyant Italians: Vittorio Sgarbi

Flamboyant Italians: Vittorio Sgarbi

Sgarbi

Living in Italy sometimes is like being inside a really bad soap opera, it’s an emotive, quirky and melodramatic place filled with controversies, corruption and paradoxes. Italy is a place of great beauty, creativity and unique experiences which can be overshadowed by equally abhorrent ugliness, criminality and hypocrisy. The Italian people themselves manifest these conflicting traits. I have…

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