Around Northern Italy in a Fiat Panda

— or —

The Contessa and the Commendatore Visit the Home Country

Sunday Oct. 21: Milano ⇒ Home

food & lodging

Food & lodging notes

All that was missing were the cats, whom we retrieved from the cat hotel on the morrow.

Smooth as clockwork. We turned in the Panda with ridiculously little trouble. Perhaps it was because the airport clerk spoke English, and we spoke it faster; or perhaps he just hadn’t gotten warmed up for the day yet. In any event he raised no objection about the extra day’s rental, and we were on our way with positively American dispatch. The plane got off the ground late but made up the time. While carrying our luggage across JFK for Customs, we couldn’t help noticing that the truffles had again escaped their multiple confinement. The drug-sniffing dog (a cute beagle wearing a vest and badge) was clear across the terminal, but I’d swear he looked up curiously.

We met our airport limo at Logan with only the usual Massport-induced difficulty. The luggage all made it, and on the same flight too. Wondrous days. The truffles rendered the limo as fragrant as they had rendered JFK. Our raincoats, packed in that bag, went straight to the dry-cleaners. (We had never once used them in Italy.)

The truffles are history. We consumed them ceremoniously on Saturday November 3rd, 1990, in a risotto crafted by me, accompanied by good friends and good Italian wine.

We only wish you could have been there.