The window was open and he went for it. You can’t blame him. Any one of us would have done the same thing, given the circumstances.

This story could be a take-off on the ever popular Beatles song, or, about a devious thief in the night, or . . . just a simple reminder not to leave the windows open—it’s just not prudent! (This is a little joke, since Prudence was the one who supposedly came in through the Beatles’ window.) In this particular case, however, it happens to be a short story about a gray cat named Grigio (Italian for gray), who made a few decisions of his own lately. Let’s take a look at what he’s been up to. (more…)

My name is Emerson, and I have a problem. I’m not too proud to admit it.

It became apparent to me the other day when I was shaving. We all have routines. Right? And sometimes they become so repetitive that we go into “auto pilot” mode and don’t even need to think about it anymore. We just keep doing whatever it is, not even realizing we’re still doing it. Like “zoning out” while driving. You know what I mean? You get into the car and then you arrive at your destination, but you don’t remember anything about the route. (more…)

We had a plan. But things in Italy often times don’t go according to plan.

The idea was fairly straightforward: Grab a panino, sandwich then catch the 5:30 movie. Then after the movie, we planned to get a primo, first course dish, such as pasta just before making the rounds to all of Florence’s great museums since it was “Art Tuesday,” from 7-11 pm. The three of us were excited and couldn’t wait to see how the evening would unfold! (more…)

My Italian lawnmower and I have a long and rich history together. But, I have to admit that I was ready to part ways when it’s tattered grass-catcher-bag snagged the top of the sprinkler head, shearing it off and subsequently chopping it into hundreds of tiny unrecognizable pieces scattered across the lawn. I was really angry with my favorite little IBEA push-mower and was forced to take a “time-out” to cool down a little. (more…)

As you know from an earlier post, I’ve had my share of problems with Italian flyswatters. If you didn’t already read it, you might want to check out the April story called “Fly Me to the Moon—Please,” as a suggested prerequisite to this follow-up story. Since many of you felt my pain in trying to use the wimpy traditional Italian swatters, I thought it was only fair to share some good news as well. Our luck in the domain of flies took a turn for the better on Tuesday morning when we went to Molin del Piano. Let me explain. (more…)

A nature lover at heart, I wouldn’t hurt a flea—but a fly . . . yes!

I have never heard anyone voluntarily, or under duress espouse the virtues of the common fly. I understand that they are part of creation just like me, but that doesn’t give them the right to pester, pollute and perpetrate everyday acts of annoyance on innocent people. Actually, my disdain for the fly goes way back. (more…)