I think this is going to be a long email. Like all stories you need to set the scene! I promise next instalments will be more succinct.
Well have I fallen on my feet, my Italian family are simply very special. It has been easy moving in as they are very caring, very kind and great people.
The English lessons are really occurring at four levels. With Sonia, the Mum, just in everyday conversation, with Stefano, the Dad, also in conversation but as well as that formally discussing grammar etc. With Nicholas, who is 11 in October I do some formal work with books I brought with me but just take opportunities to chat. We have started reading the BFG. He has quite a bit of English and will interpret for his Mum. He is a great kid, I really like him, he is a patient big brother. Aurora who is five is a real live wire, she is full of energy and never stops talking. She talks to me like I understand everything in Italian which is really cute. I smile when appropriate, frown if required. It’s like it was with the little Yolngu kids. With Aurora we do counting, colours, animal names etc. She can count to 10 in English and knows all of the main colours already. Her Dad says to her “Can you speak English?” She always answers with a very affirmative YES!
Porto Sant’Elpidio is very pretty. I walk along the beach each morning and also go for bike rides. Stefano walked with me on Saturday. I need to do this as Sonia is an amazing cook. Lunch is the main meal, the first day I had seconds of pasta only to see these amazing meat balls come next. I have learnt to go easy! I didn’t need to have it confirmed I love Italian food but when you find yourself with someone who loves to cook it and does it like Sonia every day, well what can I say!!
My little bit of Italian has helped from both sides. Stefano and Sonia have a bit of a competition going. She knows more than she realises and a couple of times has understood me before Stefano, her excitement excites me. We have been out together without Stefano and Nicholas and managed to figure things out! Stefano has said that it is very important to him that his children learn English and he is desperate to improve his as well.
The family apartment is lovely, I am comfortable and feel at home. Sonia did my washing and then unbeknown to me she ironed it all – there it was on my bed waiting for me! She said she also loves ironing! I told them most Australians don’t like ironing. Stefano asked me if the women did the ironing in Australia. I explained that many men do their own ironing and that one of my brother’s does all of the ironing in his house. No guesses for which one.
So far the weather has been just perfect. We swam at the beach on Saturday. The water is clear and the temperature just right.Sunday we went to two beautiful towns in the hills but by the sea- Numana and Sirolo. check out the photo.
The closer I got to PSP the more the butterflies kicked in but the minute I walked out of the airport to the awaiting family and the traditional Italian welcome of “air kisses” I knew it was going to be fine. I feel so happy, it’s been a long time since I have been so content. I have told them how grateful I am but I don’t think they know the depth of that gratitude.
P.s. Aurora is playing cards with her Nonno ( grandfather) at the moment. I brought them from Australia. They have farm animals on them. I just heard her tell him that the picture was a dog! He doesn’t speak English.