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Saturday, October 1, 2011

What did I do today?

Multiple times I found myself asking “So what did I do today?” Sometimes it was out loud, a few whispers barely audible and others only talking to myself in my head. I talk to myself a lot. A month ago, 30 days, I got on a plane in California to come here. In some ways it feels like I’ve been here for a long time. It feels natural; I don’t feel as surprised by things or scared out of my whits by everyday occurrences. In other ways it’s still that feeling of stepping off the boat or plane in this case. I want my time to count here. I want to soak it up and enjoy every minute of every adventure. That is why I ask “What did I do today?”
Today I didn’t have plans. My roommate Robyn and I didn’t get our act together to go anywhere this weekend and last night we both realized that that was a very good thing. We both had long weeks and need rest. It is so very hard to take rest when you are in a place for a very short time.
Yesterday I went to the open market and the grocery store to get ingredients for chicken pot pie (my friend Megan has wanted to make it for 2 weeks now). Then I went to a class visit to the museum of the Piazza Madonna. The building has been around for hundreds of years. First it was one of 4 entrances to the roman city where Torino stands now. Then it was more of an elaborate entrance and a place to pay taxes. It then was converted to a castle/residence for the queen. And then her daughter in law renovated it to her own personal style. I walked where people in the middle age walked, crazy!
After that friends met me and we walked Via Garibaldi which has tons of stores and is one of the streets of the fashion district. I got shoes! Yay! My sandals died last week. I have been looking at the open market, but they are getting rid of their sandals because it’s getting colder, the sandals are not my style (that’s putting it mildly), and Italian women have feet that are much smaller than mine. I got sandals for the bargain of €5! So excited!
We made chicken pot pie, but well it was like chicken soup with dumplings because in our haste to make food we forgot some stuff and the recipe forgot to mention stuff so we weren’t reminded…so we’ll have to have potatoes another night (:
This morning I researched Torino for some fun things to do. After researching, we (Robyn and I) found that the Royal Hunting Lodge closes after this weekend. Yes, everyone I went to the royal hunting lodge today. No I did not go hunting. Would I go hunting in sandals? Please, I’m smarter than that. (I got asked that question from a friend while coming home)
Before taking the tour Robyn and I grabbed lunch. First a crepe slathered in nutella. It was so hot to try and eat, and we got really messy. Then some grilled sandwiches from a café to cut the sweetness and round out the meal
At the Lodge we got our tickets that were free so it was more of a formality. We were told that the tour was only in Italian. Oh, and we were put on a tour that was not for another hour. We killed time by walking down a country lane and walking part of the grounds. When we went on the tour it was completely in Italian, and we tried to look like we knew what the tour guide was saying. We didn’t get caught…this time! The tour guide did use her hands to talk but not in the charades fashion that some Italians here do. I actually could understand a lot of what she was talking about. “No cell phones on or photography in the building.” “…the chandelier and windows are from Bologna and Verienze (Bologna and Venice) to give light to the space…” So proud of myself!
For dinner we had kebobs and baked bread with cheese and other goodness. Peaches made from the Cuisine class recipe are cooking in the oven. Recipe is posted below (:

Pesche alla Piemontese

6 fresh or canned peaches
2 ½ tablespoons sugar
4 tablespoons butter
1 egg yolk (can be admitted)
5 almond macaroons crumbled (you can substitute another cookie or leave out it is for an almond taste)
2 (large) spoons of dark cocoa powder

Wash and cut the peaches in half. Remove the pits and scoop out some of the flesh and put into a bowl. Make the halves of peaches bowl-like and place in a baking dish that has been coated with butter. Mash the flesh and add in the sugar, egg yolk, chocolate and macaroons. Mix well and fill the halves of the peaches. Dot with butter and bake at 375 for about an hour.
I think it would be delicious with a scoop of vanilla ice cream on the side or top.

Don't the peaches look yummy! Sitting in the middle ages replica garden. so nice!

A view from the Piazza Madonna

The evidence that there was at some point crepes and very messy eaters

The front gates to the hunting lodge Yes, that is a stag signaling that this is the royal hunting lodge

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