“I Hate Days Like This”


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First of all, I don’t. Go here and listen to this song: MIKA: “Rain.” Giacomo turned us on to this artist. If any of you have listened to a cheesy pop radio station recently, you’ll have heard him singing with Ariana Grande on the “Popular Song.” Whenever we go on excursions during the break each day or on Sunday we take Giacomo’s nicer/safer car and he plays the music. This always comes on, and we love it because it’s so ironic. The song is upbeat and catchy, but when it comes to the refrain we just lose it. We can’t possibly hate days like this, so we shout the lyrics at the top of our lungs. Picture a convertible full of happy, salty, carefree, well-sunned, and slightly giddy young adults all wearing sunglasses and huge smiles. That’s us, every day. Well, when it doesn’t rain. Sorry (not sorry) to brag.

Yesterday was a particularly good day to not hate. Avis’ sister and her husband arrived. I don’t know how to spell their names, but my best guess is Salisteen (her) and Valodja (him). They’ll be here for another week, and I must say I’m quite pleased. They’re extraordinarily entertaining and kind. They appreciate my cooking, which is even better.

Last night I made Veal, stewed with sage and white wine (Spezzatina di vitello alla salvia), piselli alla fiorentina (peas, florentine style), and penne con il rosemarino e la pancetta affumicata (penne pasta with Rosemary and smoked prosciutto). It was actually quite good. I sent the boys shopping in the afternoon yesterday when I couldn’t go because I was preparing tea, and they bought large peas. The dish is meant to be made with tiny sweet peas, but it worked decently well with the larger, tougher ones. The veal was slow cooked on the stovetop which was easy and fun. The pasta was super delicious and I made three pounds of it so we have plenty of leftovers for lunch today.

Luckily I get to make maccheroni al forno (baked macaroni noodles with cheese!) tonight so I get another easy day. I’m going to prepare the dish ahead of time so all I have to do tonight is cook the string beans and the pork chops. Making one of the dishes, whether it’s the pasta sauce or the meat or even prepping the vegetable in the morning is super helpful. It gives me time to set the table, pour red wine, and take pictures of my food before I serve dinner.

By the way, this crowd loves their red wine. Between 9 people somehow five liters of red wine got drunk at dinner time alone. In one night. It’s a little absurd.

Tomorrow is a day off. I have no idea what we’ll be doing, but I’m excited to find out!

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