Objectives based English School since 1998

My life in Abruzzo

(1)The whole of Abruzzo is full or tradition, and when you visit Abruzzo, its beauty hits you. Pretty villages, quiet countryside and great food.(2) There isn't much noise in the cities compared to other regions of Italy where you can find the main tourist locations. You can breathe the clean air. Eat fresh food. The weather in Abruzzo is like the weather in New York. The climate is mild, and reaches 5 degrees in the winter and 35 degrees in the summer. (3) There are a lot of rumours about Abruzzo, but the locals are well behaved, and like to look for new people in their village to find out more about the world and share stories. People are always telling me, the importance of keeping traditions. Some festivals run over a whole weekend and bank holidays and both the young and old seem to have the time of their lives together.

(4) I can testify that the Abruzzi are not shy people and they will argue over everything, but in good spirit, as they will happily give you a hug and a kiss at the end (I have to admit they are clever people!). You must learn the language too, you cannot depend on English for survival and that is pretty important to remember. When I say something in Italian, the trick is, I speak with confidence. (5) The locals are awkward around foreigners, they acknowledge and actually feel complemented over your efforts to speak the language. I have realised that they can often speak English but don't like to make mistakes and do not want to be criticized. They are, at the end, very close to their family and relations. The Abruzzi unfortunately come across as rather cruel to their pets. Foreigners are concerned that Abruzzi are allowed to deal with animals in this way, but they will explain that animals are animals and people are people and they mainly can't see anything wrong. That is a shame.

(6) Abruzzi like to keep in shape. They are careful about their weight, and weigh themselves regularly, on average, once a week. To get into shape they like sport and eat well. Sport is the only way to loose weight. They eat almost all meats, like beef and ham even if too much meat is bad for you. You can choose between cooked and raw ham for example. They like salads, lentils, and there is no difference between what the males and the females eat.

(7) Abruzzo is not an expensive place to go for a trip, holiday or honeymoon. I often like to travel in the mountains or have an afternoon snack at the beach. Great ways to spend your free time. I like reading on the beach while watching the boats sail past, and listen to the waves. I remember once, seeing a man tip-over his boat while he was tying a knot to come into the peer. In the mountains on the other hand, there is a lot of wild life, like wolves, bears, eagles and snakes. It is difficult to get angry about anything when you live here. Is there anything else you could possibly want out of life?

(8) Last year, I decided to buy a house. I found a very big house in a very quiet town at the end of a country road. It is at the edge of town. There is an excellent restaurant near by, but, above all, there is a beautiful view of the green valleys and no office blocks! At the end of the valley you can see the lighthouse at Vasto.

(9) I recognised that there was a lot of work to do on the house but the agent who guided me was very honest and experienced. He knows lots of builders, electricians and plumbers who can help me and he can manage them until I move to Abruzzo. I am still young, I am 38 years old. (10)The house is full of character. The path is made of gravel leading to an old front door. The structure is sound, but the roof has a hole in it and is therefore leaking. It has a kitchen and lounge on the ground floor with two bedrooms and bathroom on the first floor. There are lights in every room. (11) There are internal stairs to get to the first floor but you need to use a ladder to reach the roof. The tiles on the roof and around the house are all original. There is a huge fireplace, bread oven and chimney. Having a fireplace will save on my fuel bill. (12) The previous family left some furniture. There was a wardrobe, wooden table, and a cupboard built into the kitchen wall. There is even a point for the washing machine and microwave.

Before I purchased the house, I waited for the agent to supply drawings of all the rooms, and the layout of the house. (13) He explained the legal issues and the law of contract for hours and about the rights of way over the land. I thought the whole process would take years, and I was really looking forward to completion. However, after two months we were allowed to do the final signing. I was very scared so I hired a lawyer which was unnecessary as the Notary was very thorough. At the end, we all shook hands and I was finally an owner of a house in Italy. (14)I want to move over, but I haven't planned anything yet. I wish there was a single currency to make the transfer easier.

In the States I have a company, I employ 5 people. I make a good living so I can't complain. They say I am a good employer, who knows if they mean it? I think they are excellent employees, well educated, all with degrees and very nice people. I work a lot in the criminal courts, so I do not understand civil law, like contract and tort. Wish me luck!