Thursday, November 24, 2011

Italia Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving here at the villa way amazing... but first I have some photos from earlier this week then i'll share the wonderful tale of our Thanksgiving con illustration. 

Double rainbow that came over Migiana one day at the villa

One of the cats at Antonella's house

Giant Aloe vera cactus 

To celebrate the end of our semester here in Italy we had an art show and gala with some of Rosella Vasta's friends from the community. Since we were having this party anyway we also celebrated Thanksgiving at the same time. The first shots are of us getting ready for the big night. It had been quite a while since we got all dressed up and used our resources to look well groomed. One of the outcomes of community living is really getting to see everyone without masks, be it make-up, face wash, brushing the hair, etc. The past few weeks our group has just been living, no cover. I hope that makes sense. 
Anyway, we got done up for the event... 

We pulled out the clothes that we brought for going out on the town or going to the churches in Roma and Fierenze. The clothes haven't gotten much use :) 

At the gala all of our favorite italian friends and their families came to share the meal. 

Following Italian customs we had our appetizers first. These included cheese puffs, chips, fried mashed potato stick things... they look like mozzarella sticks. There were also little pizza bite things and other backed breads with tuna or spicy cheese in the middle. All of which were spectacular...

The second course was penne with red sauce and fresh parmesan cheese. It was wonderful! 

For the second course we had turkey... but we did not just have any turkey... we had a 15 kilo turkey. Which I believe is equivalent to about a 33lb turkey. This was a beast! Below is one of our wonderful cooks Ivan and Rosella Vasta. Rosella was posing with the turkey for us :) 

Our other most wonderful cook Rosa was the main carver of the giant turkey. She did a great job! 

Though we had already had two courses prior to the actual turkey and fixins I filled my plate to try everything. I could not have been more happy with my decision. There was eggplant, green beans, potatoes with some herb, turkey of course, flavored artichoke hearts, and last but certainly not least was a stuffing made with chestnuts, sausage, and bread! It was the absolute best stuffing I have ever tasted in my entire life! My mouth waters just talking about this stuffing. We are in process of getting the recipe for this wonderful concoction! 

Before dessert some of Rosella's art historian friends went around, observed the art and came up to talk to our group about what they thought. They said that they could see great depth in each work and wonderful creativity. It was good to hear an outsiders perspective about all of it. We have been surrounded by these pieces for months so we have begun to get callused to their greatness. 

Following dinner and a dessert of a white cake with chocolate mouse layers we all took photos with everyone and some of the art. 

Later we had a few people perform. Then we handed out our thank you gifts to the family and employees. We also were blessed to be able to hear Paula's poetry. Hopefully i'll get video up of her reading her poems soon :) The evening finished up with Michele popping bottles of prosecco and making his rounds as the party host. A few wonderful people in our group put together a slide show of pictures from the trip and we watched that as well. It was a long night and we didn't end up getting to bed until the wee hours of the morning. 
Overall, Thanksgiving in Italy was quite the experience. It is a dinner that I will always remember. 
Today (actual Thanksgiving in America) we cleaned up the studio areas and relaxed. Some of us headed into town to pick up some last minute gifts, then we had lunch and Italian class. We went for a long run today and then had a relaxing evening. Dinner was a rice dish, great rolls, potatoes with herbs, green beans, fried artichoke heart (sooo good!), sliced ham with some type of pesto flavoring, to top it all off Michele brought out his homemade sangria and we were given fried apple slices. I will definitely have to make them when I get home. They were so good! 
We leave on Saturday morning to new adventures. It has all flown by so quickly... such is life

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