Italians are famously family-oriented, so I didn’t hesitate to tell my Benano neighbors how excited I was about my mother’s upcoming visit. The women of the village seemed to share my excitement. I imagine they were a little curious — they probably calculated that she was roughly their age. My confirmation that “ha 79 anni” (literally, “she has 79 years”) sealed the deal. They welcomed her to Benano with a heretofore unseen level of enthusiasm. And they proved themselves to be keen observers, describing her to me as giovane (young), bella, and forte (strong). All true.
They didn’t really get to know her, though, or understand what makes her laugh … like the “getting personal” section of the Italian phrase book she read aloud on one of our drives. While we didn’t need phrases like “Do you have protection?”, it was good to know that information was available should the situation have presented itself.
Tales of our travels coming very soon.