Sardinia is famous for many things: the number of nuraghe that dot the island, the earthy red cannonau wine, lightning storms that hit a little too close, and of course la seada. The little town that I live in, we call it la seada, and each town throughout the island will have its own distinct name and pronunciation for this sweet must-try dessert.
It’s a fresh cheese-filled pastry that is lightly fried then drizzled with local honey, or sugar, honey is the better choice, and seems to be the most traditional way served.
I watched a seminar in a lovely little town called Lunamatrona, and I learned how to make this traditional treat. Just look at the detail and tools used to create this local pastry! Such detail and artistry.
Not every seada will look like the ones pictured. I was lucky enough to meet an extremely talented woman whose sole purpose is detail and deliciousness in preparing everything Sardinian. She had these wooden stamps specifically tailored to meet her needs. She made la seada pictured, mine were unworthy of photography, but I tried and had a great time.
I am humbled. Thank you, dear Sardinia.
Do you emerge yourself in the traditional food culture of a place you travel to? I’d love to hear about it in the comment section below.
There’s a program on TV called L’Eredità – Inheritance where seven players compete against each other in a number of trivia quizzes that test their knowledge on various topics. The last one standing wins the inheritance in a guillotine style final word game … that I’ve guessed correctly, just once.
There’s a gregarious host that is personable and oftentimes funny, and no Italian TV program would be without dancing girls (except … this year they have a male dancer, only took about ten years) that reveal answers to the word games.
It’s not the first time I’ve started the process to obtain the ominous Italian driver’s license. I wrote about it some years ago too: about the struggles with the language and how the exam questions are written just to confuse you. I’d love to share that link with you, however, I’m presently blogging from my cellphone and I haven’t figured out how to add a link within text. I’ll share it with you in the comment section.
It’s back to basics it seems, right from the start and, after having driven only automatic vehicles for close to thirty years, this dog needs to learn new tricks and a whole new style of driving.
Stick shift, standard/manual transmission have very different styles of driving. I’m not interested in taking corners like a Formula One driver so the idea of stick shift doesn’t appeal to me in that sense, it just makes me more freaking paranoid about taking a corner in these small mountainous towns.
There’s more foot and hand movements needed to safely complete those actions compared to an automatic car, where the car just effortlessly glides into gear and you’re able to sing your favourite song while the panorama slowly opens before you.
My Italian friends keep persuading me to learn stick shift for the sake of driving like a Formula One driver, as they all take such corners so tight and fast that my stomach flip flops. They love it! I want to vomit and they don’t seem to understand my complete annoyance at having to learn a whole new style of driving and their tight corners.
There is the option of taking all the required written and road tests in an automatic car, but you will be forbidden from driving a stick shift, sounds fabulous doesn’t it? There’s a catch. Most driving schools only provide stick shift cars to their learners. There could be an automatic car available but it’s stuck in someone’s garage 250 kilometers from where you live and it’s missing the steering wheel.
After exhausting all options, I’m about ready to book the written exam, I’m getting three to four errors on the at home quizzes and the odd few times zero errors. I feel confident that within the next few months I can accomplish this ominous goal.
And just a heads up to the people in the valley, I’ll be coming to learn stick shift, take it easy on me. 😉
If you have any tips on the theory or driving exam, I’d love to hear them.
There are a few things I dislike about living the island life in the Mediterranean, it can’t always be la dolce vita.
Those few things are, and in no particular order, and only two make my blood boil: raw tomatoes, dog owners not cleaning up their dog’s shit from my front porch, and having to enter any type of government or banking office.
It was mercato Monday morning in town, a place where all the local farmers come to sell their fruit, vegetables, honey, bootleg wine, handmade leather goods, candy and clothing. It’s honestly the highlight of my week, all this shopping!
I headed to the local atm machine to withdrawal the weekly funds and my card was blocked from even entering the ancient money machine. I tried again, and no luck. There was no choice, I could feel the anxiety creeping up on me knowing I had to enter this office, it’s always such a hassle, such a disaster!
In I go … and wait an hour before it’s my turn.
Good morning, the atm has blocked my card, it won’t go into the machine.
Good morning, okay, can I have your ID card? Oh, is this still your phone number?
No, Im sorry, that is no longer my number. I have just returned from Canada after two years and no longer have access to that phone number. Here is my new number …
Okay, thank you. Allow me to input your new phone number. Do you have your cellphone with you?
(a little chuckle) No, sorry, I didn’t bring my phone because I didn’t think I would need it this morning. I just wanted to use the atm. Why?
Because we will send you a verification code to your new phone number that you must use to approve this new change to your account.
Oh, okay, but I hadn’t planned on coming into the office today, otherwise …
*the teller beside spoke up and even pulled their mask down to scold me… You, you, you must always bring your cellphone with you when you enter an official office!!
This was repeated to me several times by a teller that wasn’t even helping me in the first place. They berated me so loudly and with such a tone that my blood boiled, my right fist clenched hidden in my winter jacket, my teeth clenched so tightly that my face turned to stone.
I had no idea that I was coming into this office, I’m sorry I don’t have my phone. May I close this account?
Yes, you can close …
The maskless teller … I don’t give a crap if you close your account.
What on earth just happened?!? I was so shocked at the tone and treatment of this teller that I just wanted to run away. Not only weren’t they directly helping me, they have no opinion on whether I close my account or not. They also made my business, the business of everyone else waiting in that office.
The verification code is valid for twenty-four hours. Once you’ve verified your card should work.
Have we finished here?
So, I didn’t even need my cellphone in the first place as the code is valid for twenty-four hours. Ugh. What ignorance! I turned on my heel and walked right out the door, and cried. (Well, far way from this office, so they couldn’t see me.) Yup, I freaking cried from the wrath of this person. It was more of a “shock” cry than a “poor me” cry. The audacity. I’m still reeling from this maskless scolding.
Has something similar happened to you while trying to peacefully do your business in Italy?
The Sardinian mountain sounds here are still the same and I wouldn’t change it for the world: goats bleating gleefully in the distant, the echo of donkey’s heehaw-ing as they chase each other under a twisted cork tree, farmers calling up the mountain to their cattle that it’s breakfast time, a solitary owl that makes its presence known in the wee hours of the morning, every morning perched atop the roof, and the distant sea that roars her mighty strength onto this island’s shore with dazzling drops of sea water.
Hello, Ciao. I’m finally back after a two year hiatus from Sardinia, Italy. The last two years have seen a dramatic change in the way we view the world, and it’s my hope that I can continue to inspire through this blog with tidbit’s on the culture, traditions and snapshots from this glorious island in the Mediterranean.
A new British reality program has hit the airwaves where eight people between the ages of fifty-five to ninety-three undergo extreme diet plans and exercise regimens. The program is filmed on an island full of centenarians, an island full of splendour, an island filled with mystery, and a longevity that is deeply planted at its roots. The island is the second largest island in the Mediterranean, the island is Sardinia, Italy. The goal of this television program is to look, a joint, 100 years younger in 21 days. Surely, that is not possible! I’ve lived here for ten years and I can see the age creep in, it’s inevitable. Coming to Sardinia will not make you look younger in twenty-one days, but she will definitely make you feel younger in twenty-one days. Read on and I’ll tell you how to easily live to 100 years of age.
There are some strict rules that go along with this absurd reality show: all contestants are placed on a strict diet that suits the individual best, they are put through a rigorous exercise program and they undertake radical anti-ageing treatments like a snail facial, cow urine shampoo and coffee enema. EEEEwwwwwwww!
It was an overcast day but not chilly when we decided to head up into the mountains for an afternoon walk with friends. We weren’t in search of anything, in particular, just the meeting of new people, dialogues, laughter and panoramic views that stretch as far as southern Corsica to Limbara and to the northwestern tip of Sardinia. Pure Sunday bliss in my books, a perfect Sunday spent between mountain and sea. Continue reading →
Sometimes in life the big things take over, they are uncontrollable and we lose focus. I prefer to look at the little things that make this world spin, that make me spin. The little things that get inside my head and complete me. The little things that seem so insignificant to the bigger picture that I’ve forgotten how I got here. It was the little things that built my grand picture, the little things that held me up, the little things that make me believe, make me hold on to the dream that I will see you again.
Have you looked at the little things in your life lately?
I’m proud to have been included in the quarterly on-line magazine known as Insiders Abroad. It’s a magazine from the English-speaking community with inside information and a yellow page directory for Italy, Spain and France.
It was such a pleasure to write a piece for this established on-line magazine that I burst with joy and did the happy dance all over the cobblestone streets of Sardinia.
You can delightfully view the colourful on-line magazine here:
A BIG thank you to the Insiders Abroad team for featuring my article in the magazine.