May 11, 2006

"Sicilians are brilliant in getting their point across."

After a hike in the mountains -- with photos -- Nina drives into the beautiful Campofelice di Rocella and has dinner in a little restaurant where, the waiter tells her, no American has ever dined:
Such a mistake. True, no one speaks English here, but how could that possibly matter? I no longer take my ancient little dictionary anywhere. Sicilians are brilliant in getting their point across. And each explanation, each encounter ends with a handshake and a smile.

12 comments:

HaloJonesFan said...

There's a reason that Opera is the art of Italy.

I've heard it said (and I believe it) that you cannot possibly fail to understand what an Italian is telling you.

Bob Van Der Velde said...

"Sicilians are brilliant in getting their point across" - that must be what Justice Scalia meant. See, e.g., "The Nino Scalia Guide to Sicilian Hand Gestures", http://www.thenation.com/doc/20060424/epps

BrianOfAtlanta said...

"Sicilians are brilliant at getting their point across."

Yes. I learned that while watching "The Godfather".

Ann Althouse said...

Okay, this post was a test to see how long it would take to get a mention of Justice Scalia and the Mafia.

SippicanCottage said...
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Elizabeth said...

Sippican,


My greetings to your Irish aunts. I drove down the Gulf Coast today for the first time since the storm. Now I'm drinking a good stout beer (Abita Turbodog) and trying not to cry. This thread's on communicating without words. I wish I could right now.

P.S. Glad you enjoyed wwoz.org. The good stuff is there.

SippicanCottage said...
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Elizabeth said...

Sippican, yes, I thought of them as we passed through. I felt so bad for what they've lost.

I envy your cousin and his film! I was so unhappy at the devastation, but also because I just couldn't bring forth my memories--and they're not distant!--of the homes and the beachfront back. It's like when you suddenly can't remember the voice of face of a loved one who has died. He's right; it won't be the same, and some of these towns are about 300 years old. There's no getting some things back.

I'm grasping this storm's consequences in stages, and each bit sets me back for a couple of weeks. I'm in a little cocoon of near normality here in Uptown New Orleans, but even here, we're all experiencing PTSD. We're really not normal, and just today I realized for how many miles the craziness stretches. How can one imagine a storm stretching hundreds of miles from side to side? Easy; just drive along its path. It's like a monster strode through, and left footprints in splintered wood and uprooted trees.

hygate said...

"Now I'm drinking a good stout beer (Abita Turbodog)"

You have good taste in beer.

“How can one imagine a storm stretching hundreds of miles from side to side? Easy; just drive along its path. It's like a monster strode through, and left footprints in splintered wood and uprooted trees."

When I drove from Augusta, GA to Charleston six months after Hugo I saw the same thing. I haven't gone to New Orleans since Katrina because it still doesn't feel appropriate. I know they need the revenue, but I wouldn't feel comfortable knocking back Turbodogs and listening to Zyedeco or browsing the antique shops. I would keep thinking about the devastation so close at hand. I certainly wouldn't be comfortable going on the Greyline tour of the Ninth ward. To me that seems like standing around and gawking at someone else’s tragedy.

SippicanCottage said...
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Elizabeth said...

Sippican, that's too much for me to ponder. Your boat? In Massachusetts?

hygate, I understand your emotional position. But I can speak with absolute confidence: the small business owners who sell the antiques, the bottles of beer, and all that stuff, really want to see you. We think you seeing the misery is not gawking. It's witnessing. You're more than welcome here, and only a few, who are dealing with alot of pain, god bless them, resent the tours. It's like a pilgrimage, to Canterbury, to Ground Zero. Dancing, drinking, crying, girding the loins and going forth again to fix things--they're all part of life here now.

Jackjoshua said...
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