Sunday night, we did go to the pizzeria. Piero had a friend in town and they wanted to have a meal together, so they chose Pizzeria Flamingo. During the day it is actually a lido, a private beach where one pays to rent a spot with a lounge chair and umbrella, so the outdoor eating area was right next to the sea. We got there a little after 10 p.m. We left around 12:30 a.m. It was so hardcore! Up to that point, I had been feeling pretty Italian just eating my meals around 8 or 9 in the evening, but never had eaten much later than that. Now I’ve experienced the real thing.
I almost ate my entire pizza, too (I probably could have, but something keeps me from eating excessively in public…not at home, mind you…just in public). My cousin Anna says she won’t be able to go back to American pizza after this, and I’m beginning to agree. Not much can compare to Italian pizza baked in a wood oven…nel forno a legna. I had the pizza mexicana, which featured red and yellow peppers with spicy salami. Ruggero, the five-year-old, had pizza with…wait for it…FRENCH FRIES AND PIECES OF HOT DOG. I told them that this kind of pizza would be very strange in America. Maria asked why. I said I guessed Americans hadn’t thought of it yet.
Yesterday afternoon I went to the sea and got a little jellyfish sting (very little…you can’t even see the spot anymore). The Italian word for jellyfish is medusa. I’m glad it didn’t turn me into stone. The jellyfish was actually very beautiful, small with brown stripes. The water is SO clear here that one can see everything: jellyfish…lots of fish, actually…seaweed…rocks. I figured out that I could open my eyes underwater without much discomfort and now going to the sea is much more fun. Speaking of rocks, the beaches in the area immediately around Taormina are all pebble beaches. They kind of make it difficult to walk, and in the water they are covered with algae and quite slippery. I’ve grown to appreciate the rocks, however, because the lack of sand makes life SO much easier.
I wish you all were here to enjoy this with me! If you find yourself free in the next two weeks, I’ll be here. Bunk beds at Taormina’s Odyssey are only €20 per night. Can’t guarantee the same value for an airline ticket, unfortunately.
Before my evening shift, I’m going to investigate the library. I think it might be fun to read some children’s books. I’m also reading a book that was here at the hostel called Fuori da un Evidente Destino (Beyond a Clear Destiny, I guess I’d say…but if any Latin students are reading this, please note that it’s not a literal translation). It’s a novel set in Flagstaff, Arizona, and I find it amusing to read about American culture from the perspective of an Italian author. So far there’s a character named Caleb Kelso, a hunter who has a dog named Silent Joe (because it never barks). Caleb appears to have some money troubles, but at the end of chapter one has just discovered a mysterious cave at the base of a tree split in half by lightening. Silent Joe, the dog, has emerged from the hole with a human bone in its mouth. Dun dun dun…