Beppe Severgnini says it better


Beppe Severgnini says it better

Saturday, May 16th, 2020

On March 12th I wrote a post describing my thoughts about how the Italians have reacted to the shutdown that started here on March 10th entitled “I’m proud of you Italy“. Recently I saw an op-ed by an Italian journalist, Beppe Severgnini,  who writes for Corriere della Sera, the newspaper of Milano. He has lived in London and Washington, D.C. as correspondent for Italian newspapers and has written several books. His description of he comportment of the Italians in the face of the pandemic was exactly what I believe seeing how people are behaving themselves here. I recommend that you read it too. Here is the link to “How Italy Coped, and Will Keep Coping“. All of restrictions have produced a good result. Of course here in Italy the government has relied on experts and after the initially severe restrictions have taken measured steps on relaxing the rules all the while keeping an eye on the statistics before taking the next step. Certainly a contrast with how the U.S. is dealing with the pandemic – at least on the national level.

On the 18th of May, two days from this writing the restrictions will be significantly relaxed here. The stores are getting ready for it. I see them restocking the shelves and updating the window displays. There is a feeling of real optimism for all of us that have been severely restricted for 10 weeks. Due to the restrictions the rate of increase of new infections in the country now is at 0.4% and I expect that in the next couple of days it will be a bit lower. There will still be social distancing requirements in stores, restaurants and bars. We will be able to freely travel within our region, mine for example is Emilia-Romagna. There will still be prohibitions until June 3rd except for work, health reasons or urgency. I’m a little worried about being able to go to Torino on my planned date of the 23rd unless I can make the case for urgency. I’ll go to the office of the Carabinieri early next week to plead my case. Wish me luck.

I am moving to the new apartment next Thursday, the 21st. Since I have no furniture to move it will be pretty easy. I have a commitment from a guy with a van who was highly recommended by a good friend and two other friends who can help a bit. It shouldn’t take more than a little over 2 hours to transport everything. I’ll explain all of the logistical issues in a future post. Laura is planning to move here in June, hopefully the second week. Hers is a lot more complicated because she’s bringing a bunch of furniture which introduces major complications. That should make a really interesting post.

Getting away from the virus subject, I have been seeing swallows here in Bologna. I’ve really never noticed them here before but now I’ve been spending more time looking out windows where I have a limited view. I never remember seeing swallows in Oakland but maybe I wasn’t looking for them. I’ve seem them a lot here; in Torino, in Sardegna and now in Bologna.  That will be one thing that I will miss about Torino. Laura lives on the 3rd and top floor (that would be the 4th in the U.S.) with a balcony that overlooks a large cortile (courtyard) surrounded  by other similar apartment buildings but with gaps between them. I remember sitting out on her balcony and watching the swallows come in like a squadron of fighter planes, make a trip around the cortile and exit from the way that they came in. Once they came so close to the balcony that I could almost have reached out and touched them. They are really magnificent!

This is my view. Not very exciting but at least I can see outside and breath a bit of fresh air
Laura’s view – a big cortile with lawn area, trees and parking

I’ve decided to include some photos for a little while of what I’ve been cooking and eating while restrictions have been in place. I’m glad that I’m a reasonably good cook. Since there’s always a lot of good seafood at the supermarket I indulge myself and buy one or two things when I go. Usually I buy enough to have leftovers so I can eat fish 2 or 3 days. Since I only go shopping once a week then I go to other options. So today – 2 fish dishes.

Swordfish with salad and chardonnay – the swordfish is sliced much thinner here so it’s not as much as it seems.
Monkfish with tomatoes and olives – love that monkfish!

And the Baci saying for the day:

To live is the rarest of thing in the world. Most people just exist.

Vivere e’ la cosa pu’ rara al mondo. La maggior parte della gene esste e nulla piu’.

Oscar Wilde

Stay tuned for an update in 3 or 4 days.

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