26 October 2014

To Canada With Love - Sundays in My City

As another Canadian soldier was killed this past week I thought I'd repost something from several years ago instead of more pictures of Italy.


I am currently deployed to Afghanistan. I just came from a ramp ceremony. It’s where they carry a casket to the plane to send home. His name is Brian. He was 42; from Ottawa. He has a wife and 2 daughters; one who shares my name.

Attendance is not required but it is something I feel everyone should do at least once. Just like I think the news should show flag-draped caskets arriving home. The men and women dying here are not just statistics. They’re people with families and they need to be honored and their sacrifice needs to be known by the general population. A population that’s busy trampling each other to get to the sale items at Wal-Mart. Priorities seem misplaced from here.

It was cold and very windy out on the flight line. It was difficult standing at attention. You had to brace yourself against a wind that was trying to blow you over and you couldn’t wipe the snot running from your nose or rub your eyes that were stinging from the wind and dust. But whatever the weather (and it does go to both extremes here), I’ll be out there. Because I don’t want to forget those fathers, mothers, sons and sisters. Because the next time, it could be me.

Next week I’ll travel home for the first time in 6.5 months. After 2 weeks I’ll return for another 6 months. Whatever your feelings on the war, I encourage you to attend a ramp ceremony for a returning soldier, airman, marine or sailor if you happen to live near a base. This war will not end if people at home are permitted to forget that it is still happening; that people are still dying.

And don’t tell my mother I said it could be me next time! As far as she knows there is nothing dangerous here, I never leave the safety of the base and the Taliban never fire rockets into our camp!
 My thoughts are with Canada this week.

Unknown Mami
**I am not in the Armed Forces; I merely work for them. I deployed as a civilian and enjoyed the protection of US, Canadian, Dutch and British Forces; for which I am eternally grateful.  I do not wish to be seen as making the same kind of sacrifices as those who sign up to protect and defend.

19 October 2014

The Colorful Houses of Burano - Sundays in My City

A popular Venetian destination is the island of Murano. Murano is known for glass making.  We went there.  I was bored out of my mind and mom and Gran weren't that impressed either.  So we hopped back on the water bus and moved on to Burano; an island known for lace making.  I wasn't looking forward to this stop and lace making was equally boring for me but the colors on this island were incredible and taking pictures of the houses was more than enough to occupy me so mom and Gran could do their thing without me wanting to run away.

There were so many colors!!!

Orange over purple with teal blue shutters!
Apparently there is striped fabric available to match every house color so that you can fashionably let some air in without giving all the tourists a view of your living room.

Colorful reflections!

Such a beautiful little island! I'm glad I got to see it.

Have you ever been pleasantly surprised by a place you didn't want to visit?

For more sights from around the world, head over to Unknown Mami and check out the rest of the Sundays in My City posts.

Unknown Mami

11 October 2014

Eating Italian - Sundays in My City

Part of any vacation is the food. I love food! Most of my day is spent thinking about when I get to eat next and what I'm going to eat. So as soon as we decided to go to Italy I knew it was going to be a trip filled with pizza, pasta and gelato! As I mentioned in my last post, I have a lot of pictures!

I didn't take a picture of everything we ate and although I did take a picture of every gelato I'll save them for another post.  Here are some of our eats from the trip.

I don't remember exactly what Gran got but she didn't care for it much (not the only time that happened). 
Panzerotti are fried pockets of heaven! 
I got mine with mozzarella and tomato.

A nice view for dinner
This pizza was huge!  And delicious!!
Pasta at the Florence Central Market
Gelato from a veggie restaurant on a absolutely beautiful day.
Pesto pasta
Gran finally got the spaghetti and meatballs she'd been wanting!
Mama enjoying lasagna
All that remained of my spaghetti aglio e olio! We only ended up eating here because Gran had to pee and simply walked into a restaurant to use the bathroom as we couldn't find a public bathroom nearby. Since she used their bathroom they made us sit down and order something. I was Not happy.  But this ended up being my favorite pasta dish of the entire trip!
The only blueberry gelato I saw and it was excellent!
One of my two favorite gelato places and it was Right. Next. Door! to where we stayed in Milan.
Dishing out my extra dark chocolate.
The pizzas we made in our pizza making class ready to go into the oven.
Mom and Gran enjoying their pizzas
And the gelato we learned how to make.
The tasting part of our wine tour

Italian guys in straw cowboy hats making pasta at the Florence Central Market
What's your favorite Italian dish? 

Linking up with Unknown Mami for good eats and sights from around the world.

Unknown Mami

05 October 2014

Over 600 Pictures - Sundays in My City

I just returned from a trip to Italy with my mother and grandmother.  I took over 600 pictures and plan to put together a couple posts about the trip but, for now, here are a few of my favorite shots.

My first of 20 (I kid you not) gelatos...wasabi.  As soon as I saw it I had to try it.  Let me tell you, this flavor should not exist. It just isn't right!
Gran's hands after making pizza dough.

A small vineyard that we just happened across.  No filter or special effects used.

It's been a while since I joined Unknown Mami for her Sundays in My City blog hop.  You should check it out!

Unknown Mami