Friday, June 27, 2014

Big Brothers Rule

"He's my brother."
Picking up a little sister has never been so fun, now that Alexander (who goes to another school and already on summer holiday) comes equipped with a soccer ball and all of her friends want to play with him.

Having a big brother can be very cool. Reminds me of when my older brother visited me for the first time in college. "You have an older brother...who goes to Yale...who is on the swimming team?"
I guess the sweatshirt he was wearing tipped them off. These were not Math majors. "And you were going to mention this when?" Commencement?

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Summer Holiday Queries

"Maybe the boy does get enough protein."



"Maybe he did learn something in Geometry."




"Maybe I should have read this book before him..."

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

School Over...Almost

Second to last day I wake up at the crack of dawn with Alexander for his 6:50 bus.

Monday, May 26, 2014

Bucket List of a 12 Year Old Boy


(Alexander, age 12)
     
  1. Go Vegetarian for 1 week 
  2. Rope Swing in to a lake 
  3. Have a snowball fight 
  4. Go to winter wonderland in London 
  5. Watch a tennis game
  6. go to a nutellaria 
  7. send a message in a bottle
  8. let go of a floating lantern
  9. Visit the walk of fame
  10. get a cotton candy frappe (Starbucks)
  11. Go zip lining
  12. Go snowboarding 
  13. learn to fish 
  14. Become a pro at zorbing

Thursday, May 22, 2014

A Room With a View

"If only I could remember where I parked the gondola..."

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Singapore: Most Expensive City in the World

"I should be charging for this."

According to The Economist, Singapore is the most expensive city in the world. Of course, this dubious honor comes as no surprise to those who like cheese. And, I'm not talking about burrata imported from Puglia...but a simple mozzarella stick (at $2 a stick that tiny packet of 10 comes to $20). Frankly, I would like my child's questionable snacks to cost a lot less. Which reminds me of a conversation I had with Eliot as we walked to school yesterday.
"Mommy, how come we don't have a car?"
Well, considering a Toyota Corolla here costs as much as a Porsche elsewhere, let's just say, we choose to go green and leave it at that. Think of your parents as environmentally conscious people who like using public transportation.
"But when we move back to Italy we'll have to get a car, right?"
Most likely yes.
"Can we get a safari?"
A what? Wait, do you mean a Ferrari?
"Yes, a safari."
Eliot, do you have any idea how much a Ferrari costs? No, we are not getting a Safari, I mean Ferrari.
"Oh, okay... can we get a Lamborghini then?"
Have you been talking to your brother?

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

If "Breaking Bad" Was Set in Singapore



"I said Katong laksa."


1) Instead of cooking meth amphetamines, Walter White would be cooking pork dumplings.

2) Instead of using Pollos Hermanos as a front, the drug cartel would be using Din Tai Fung.

3) Instead of Albuquerque, New Mexico, the plot would unfold in Woodlands.

4) There would be way more taxis and construction work going on.

5) Instead of rehab, Jessie Pinkman would have gone on a farm stay in Perth.

6) You wouldn't need to deal drugs to break the law, carrying a durian on a bus would suffice.

7) Instead of a drug lord, crazy gun-wielding Tuco Salamanca would be a landlord. One refusing to return your deposit.

8) Most of what Jessie Pinkman says would be censored.

9) Instead of: "Yo!" Jessie would be saying: "Aiyoh!"

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Monday, February 10, 2014

This Is Naples

                                                                                         (photo Mario Gargiulo)

Years ago, I found myself alone, broken hearted, and hungry in Naples. I was staying at my parent's empty house in the middle of the summer and there was nothing to eat. I went around the corner to buy some tomatoes from a grocer. He asked me what I was intending to make for lunch. A fresh tomato salad? "It's the day before Ferragosto, all stores are closed. You'll never find any bread."  I mumbled something under my breath as I slowly walked away with my tomatoes.  I was his last customer and after I paid, he lowered the heavy saracinesca of the shop. Then he called me back: "Signorina! Wait here." Then, he went upstairs to where he lived with his family and brought me back two slices of casareccio bread in a napkin. "You can't eat a tomato salad without bread."
This is Naples.

Anni fa, mi trovai sola, sconsolata, e affamata a Napoli. Mi trovavo nella casa vuota dei miei genitori durante l'estate e non c'era niente da mangiare. Uscita di casa, sono andata alla fine della via per comprare dei pomodori dal fruttivendolo. Voleva sapere cosa intendevo cucinare. Un'insalata di pomodori? "Ma e' Ferragosto, tutti i negozi sono chiusi. Non trovera' pane." Mormorai qualcosa mentre lentamente andavo via con i miei pomodori. Ero l'ultima sua cliente, quindi abbasso' la pesante saracinesca del negozio, e mi disse: "Signorina! Aspetti qui." Poi, sali' le scale dove viveva con la sua famiglia e mi riporto' due fette di pane casareccio in un tovagliolo. "Non si puo' mica mangiare un'insalata di pomodori senza pane."
Questa e' Napoli.

Sunday, February 9, 2014