Wednesday, October 7, 2015

IVHQ Naploli Italy

Nearest and dearest thing to my heart is volunteerism. I have always been drawn toward helping others. In college, I flew to Tanzania to volunteer with Cross Cultural Solutions in an Elementary School. Guatemala City swiftly followed and I worked in an orphanage for three months. This year I was able to volunteer for IVHQ in Cusco Peru, World Vets in Romania, and now I am volunteering for IVHQ in Naples Italy. 2016 is going to be an even better year for volunteerism. I am very excited.

Oh Italy - I am not sure what I expected. Napoli is an old, dusty, dirty city. The alleyways are grey from exhaust fumes from cars and garbage is tossed carelessly everywhere. The mob is still HUGE in Italy and for years they controlled the garbage collection in the city. Or they were *suppose* to control the garbage collection. Instead they just left it to pile up around the city.... eventually the army was called to remove all the waste.... In some ways, the city itself looks like it has not changed in centuries. In other ways...... the honking horns, the constant stream of humans on the sidewalk, the high-end fashion shops, the hustle and bustle reminds me of New York City.

Italians really do live off Pizza and Pasta. No lie. Carb-Capital of the World - I would say that Italy is going to add thirty pounds to my physique .....  But my volunteer-placement is on top of a very steep mountain. An ancient old farm that belonged to Certosa di San Martino, a Monastery that was built in 1368...... I cannot explain to you how lucky I am to be working on that patch of land. We are building a garden on the side of the mountain to teach children where their fruits and veggies come from. Basic agricultural education for children of Italy.

Walking around the acres and acres of land that surround the Monastery. Everything is overgrown but everything is edible..... Walnut trees. Fennel. Lettuce. Olive trees (the harvest is this weekend). Grapes. Hazelnuts. Apple trees. Oranges. Limes - They even have a mini-farm for the children to meet domesticated farm animals. Chickens, ducks, geese, donkeys, rabbits and sheep.... I am just in love with my placement. I am so excited to get dirty at work today. We are turning the soil to make way for the new garden.


Pablo Lesse said...

Take it easy, chiken... you`r in havenly hands... :-)

Pablo Lesse said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
jochanaan said...

I have fond memories of my trip to Firenze, Italy, in 1981. But Tuscan cuisine is very different from what you describe; I never saw tomato sauce my whole week-long stay. What Fiorentini call "pizza" is a small cold pastry, and the pasta course is a small helping of noodles with a little butter and garlic. The main course at lunch and dinner was a meat course without pasta, and the dessert was fruit. Healthy and robust.

Do they still serve those hard rolls for breakfast? I came to like them, but you can't cut them with a knife! *lol*