Category Archives: Abruzzo Story

What’s the Euro at today?

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I have to pay the ‘caparra confirmatoria’ and a further advance payment for my new Abruzzo house in the middle of all the upheaval over a possible “Grexit” and thus, following the ups and downs of the Euro to Dollar has become a new pastime, in between thinking about what colors I want to paint walls and wondering whether any of the people who are clamoring to be guests at my new Italian house, will ever really visit.

My new need to convert such a large amount of money has made the fluctuations of the Euro to the Dollar and the day to day clashes between the Greek and German PMs a part of my new daily media routine, the way American politics had been in the past. Bad news brings the Euro down and good news brings the Euro up; up, down, down, up — it gets exhausting! And while I would NEVER wish harm, financial or otherwise, to any people on this earth — couldn’t a teeny tiny bit insecurity remain while I make my transactions?

Oh, God, did I really write that? Where people can see it? I’m a BAD person! But, let’s face it, the downward trend of the Euro, in addition to some personal changes in my life, such as both children almost out of graduate school, made this purchase possible. So, I follow the news and try to time my unbelievably high — for me — purchases of Euro at the best rates possible, to make my dream come true.

Because, let’s face it again, unless you really DO have a Fairy Godmother, you have to work hard and be smart to make your dreams come true. And the battle of wills between the new young Greek leader who came to office with a mandate to end extreme austerity measures in his country and the German Prime Minister, with an iron grip on finances in Frankfurt and Brussels, affects MY future too. And my dreams. I’m sure they don’t really care about this…but I wonder if they know their actions affect so many others or if they would be surprised about it?

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The Week My Dream Came True But My Heart Broke…


The story of how I finally got my lovely home in Italy will unfold over time, but the week that I found out that I actually was going to own the farm was also a week of heartbreak. My dog, my pet – – my companion of 13 years who had patiently waited for me to return from my trip visiting my new potential home in Italy, finally succumbed to cancer. It was less than a week after my return that I was petting him, and looking up at the blue sky as the vet made sure his departure from this world was a peaceful one, surrounded by those who loved him.

I’m crying right now as I type this. And I never thought that I would be the kind of person who would be crying and crying this way over the family dog. But I miss his eyes — the love that used to shine out of them. Eyes that showed love for me no matter what. That expressed a love that had no conditions. Big brown eyes that said, “I only want to be near you.”

But a week ago, the only thing that those big brown eyes said was, “I hurt.” He still wanted to be near me but I knew that he also needed me to let him go. And so I did. Sadly, he would not come with me on my next adventure. He would not come with me to the beautiful restored farmhouse in Italy where I had dreamed of him sitting next to me,  in the sun gazing at OUR  Olive Grove and at the view of the Apennine Mountains.

A few days later, my offer on the house that I had fallen in love with in Abruzzo, Italy, was accepted and I was ecstatic. I went from heartbreak to ecstasy so quickly that I almost was dizzy. But I knew that Scooby — yes, the kids had named him that as a pup — had loved me unconditionally and wouldn’t mind my going without him. After all, he had only ever wanted me to be happy. And, it made me happy to be the new owner of Fonte Monache — “The Nun’s Spring” farmhouse, in Montefino, Abruzzo. I will not take possession of it until the late summer or early fall but this is something I have dreamed about for so very long. And it has not been an easy journey either…but first, thank you Scooby. I miss you!