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A Sudden Hot June

Welcome to June. This month has been a more relaxed month than May, thank goodness. The weather has got hotter and a few friends visit. We also have a quick unexpected visit to a town we have never heard of.

Meeting followers from Australia

We had a couple of visitors from Australia. Vanessa and Greg, who we know already and have an apartment near to us but not seen since 2019. Also we met Santina and Kevin for the first time who we got to know through Instagram and Kevin also reads this blog.

It was great to catch up with Vanessa and Gregg after all this time and we had met up a couple of times during their stay. We had the nice aperitivo in Vularie Siciliane followed by their amazing cannoli one of the times, the other we went to theirs for drinks.

It was very nice to meet Santina and Kevin, who are lovely and have bought and renovated a place in Centro Storico. We had lunch at a place we hadn’t been to before, a lido, bar and restaurant called Giacomo. It is only open in the summer months, so we never really give it a thought, it was very nice.

So hi all, hope you are well and see you next time.

View from Giacomo Lido

Rainstorm – then hot hot hot

After a rainy start to June, pretty torrential, the weather turned super-hot. There has been a heatwave all over Italy with temperatures apparently reaching 43°C (109°F). It didn’t quite reach that here in Scalea, but it did reach the late 30s (around 98°F) and hasn’t dropped much since. It was a bit of a shock as it wasn’t overly hot then suddenly it was and has been since. I suppose we will have this until after summer, but you never know.

Rainy Terrace

We are already updating since we moved

The weather affects whatever items are outside, obviously. The furniture we bought when we first moved has had three and a half years of being under the very hot sun, strong winds and torrential rain. The most damage has been caused by the sun as there is a roof over part of the terrace so that protects from the rain. Also, if we know that strong winds are forecast, we move the furniture closer to the house so it doesn’t get blown around too much. We also take the cushions inside during bad weather to protect them as much as we can. The furniture has faded a little but the cushion covers have started to tear. So it was time to replace the cushions. We could have just replaced the covers, but the cushions were very thin and could get uncomfortable. So we have bought nice thick purple covered ones with back cushions too, to introduce bright colour to the terrace. I think it’s a good contrast to the dark grey.

 

Our new cushions

Freddie and Max, friends or not, we’re not sure

During this hot spell we have seen very little of our cat Freddie, he usually sleeps in a cool place somewhere. He seems to have settled for a plant pot of our neighbours which is in the shade. Then when the sun goes off the terrace, we see him again meowing for food. Our neighbour has a cat called Max and we see him walking through our outside space to get to the wild area below us or up and down the stairs of our entrance. It is amusing watching Freddie and Max together. We cannot work out of they are friends or not. Whenever Freddie sees Max, Freddie seems to like to tap him with his paw and Max hisses at him and then there is some sort of stand-off. Then Freddie taps Max again and the same thing happens and it goes like that for a while until one walks away – usually Freddie. We have also seen it the other way round, but not as often.

Talking of Freddie, he had another visit to the vets (sigh). He developed a cough. A proper cough, not like him coughing up a hair ball. We had not seen it before. Anyway, we took him to the vets and during the checks the vet said he has a small issue on his lung, but nothing to worry about. As he was a stray, obviously he won’t be in the best of health. But he could have lungworm so she administered treatment and he hasn’t coughed since. We hope he stays healthy for a good while now, he is becoming a pricey little thing.

With Freddie and the cushions, we’re not eating or drinking out as much. To be honest, if we do it too much, we get bored of it, we prefer to invite people to ours or we go to theirs. Also it is a lot cheaper.

Freddie and Max

Nothing on the Ajnella Beach in Scalea

The Comune has enforced some new rules for going on to the rocky part of the beach called Ajnella. It is a beautiful place and is a free beach, so it gets very busy in the summer. From now on, people can still be on the beach for sunbathing, swimming etc. but no one can bring parasols, deck chairs, sunbed, boats or anything to disrupt the sight of the area. It is considered a place of natural beauty and everyone has a right to see it. So only towels are permitted.

Of course, this has had opposing reactions. For someone like me who doesn’t really like sitting on the beach for long as I get bored, get too hot and burn easily because I am fair skinned, it doesn’t bother me. It would be nice to see it in the summer without all the paraphernalia that people bring. But for people who like to be on the beach all day or for a few hours, they can’t really go there unless they like to burn in the sun as there is no natural shade. It will be interesting how it is policed in July and August when the beach is normally very crowded. Not sure if it will stop rubbish being left behind though, but we shall see.

Ajnella Beach

 

The sign forbidding items on the beach

 

Tony E Birthday Meal in Ristorante Calypso

June had the birthday of our friend Tony E. So Tony, his daughter Helen, John and I went to a lovely restaurant in Belvedere Marittimo called Calypso close to the walkway along the sea. It is mainly a fish restaurant but does have non fish dishes too. The food was so tasty and the fish seemed very fresh. Also, we did not leave hungry. As a bonus, they have a gelateria next door so you can have a gelato too. I would definitely recommend if you are in the area.

View from walkway

 

Ristorante Calypso

 

Trip to Nola

Our friends Tony and Rachel from the UK arrived in June. Tony is part Italian, so was trying to find proof of heritage. We went to Nola which is in the province of Naples. It was an early start so we could get there in the morning before anything closed. This meant I saw the sunrise, which is quite rare for me in summer. We went to the anagrafe which is the registry office for birth, deaths and marriages to try and find out if there was any information there. The people at that office were so helpful and really tried to find something, unfortunately there was nothing. So Tony must try another way.

Nola is a large town, larger than we expected. It’s a historic town with grand old buildings. It felt a bit of a shock to be in a big town after being in smaller Scalea for so long. We were told by a friendly local man that there should have been a festival at the time, but that has all stopped because of Covid, he was so apologetic. A reminder that Italy is not quite back to pre-COVID normal yet.

Italian Language Exam

I forgot to let you know in my last post that I had to do a level A2 Italian language exam on 24th May. I wasn’t confident as we were told to get a pass, we needed to get 100% in listening and 75% in reading and writing comprehension. I have an issue with hearing words in Italian and I struggled during the exam, I felt better with reading and writing as I could take more time to think. My teacher contacted me on 1 June and told me that I passed. Honestly, I was shocked. Yay me!

I will end this post to tell you that we appear again on our friend’s Justin and Michael’s a YouTube Channel Prego Italia. This time I was showing them how we make limoncello. Part two will be in July. The link is here and we start at 10.43 into the video.

Thanks for reading, I really do appreciate it and love to read your comments.

Ciao ciao, a presto!

 

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