I had heard from Massimo before, last year, but he never showed up so I was thrilled to get a FB message from him that he wanted to come to see us in Verona (from Bergamo).  We met him at 9:45, in Piazza Bra and walked to Aquila Nera where we could sit, in relative quiet and air conditioning (it’s really warming up) and talk.On the way, I took this quick shot of the stack of fresh produce waiting in from the the Osteria San Eufamia, just across the street from us.


We all had our respective preferred coffees and began to chat. Before we knew it it was nearly noon.  Massimo came up to our apartment and we talked some more before he said goodbye.  What a dear friend!  We were so so happy to have this time to spend with him:IMG_2095mass


After Massimo left we changed our clothes for a lunch reso at Locanda 4 Cuochi.  I did so much research about restaurants here and we hadn’t yet been to one so this was my pick.  I loved the place.  The tables are set with paper over the nice white cloth and they give you colored  pencils for doodling.tavIMG_2097aran

We had a really solid lunch, stuffed zucchini flowers, perfectly roasted suckling pig with a lemon and sage gravy and zucchini mash.  The stand out dish to me was the “primo” of Arancini (a Sicilian stuffed rice ball).  The rice was all green with fresh basil, the little stuffing was smoked mozerella and the tomato sauce was so simple with a swirl of basil pesto.

The dessert was peach melba with calvados ice cream and I thought the ice cream had no real flavor except vanilla so that was the only miss of the whole meal.  We drank a sparking wine from Sicily first and then a Soave with the rest.  The bill was 60 euros.  We shared everything and they added a few euro onto each dish for plating and adding a bit of extra food.  I was completely happy with my choice.

We came home to rest for a short while and get some packing done.

Roy and Luisa picked us up after 6:00 and we went up to their house to hang out.  We met with their friend Paolo and his sweet 16 year old daughter who would like to come and stay with us a while.  Lots of details and obstacles lie ahead but not unsurmountable.

We had a lovely dinner up there.  Left Luisa a huge mess to clean up (Ci dispiace, Luisa) and they brought us back down to town and we said good bye. It was tough.  I was happy to have a nice midnight walk, over the Adige river, under the full moon with Ken’s arm around me.


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