Pineto, September 12, 2017

While sitting in the pines and viewing the sea, Karen rewrapped my sprained ankle (mia storta alla caviglia). The bandage (la fasciatura) that I bought at the farmacia had the sticky part on the wrong side according to Karen. She deftly fashioned a donut with some cloth she had, placed the donut around my outer ankle joint and wrapped tightly. Her advice was to walk in the sand, ride a bike and take my first day of hiking easy.

I rented a bike not far from my B&B and rode on the bike trail to the northern edge of the town where the path turned to gravel. I passed campsites and public beaches. Atri, a hilltown I visited on my last Italian trip, was on a hill in the distance. As I rode back to the southern end of town, I found a group enjoying bocce ball.

After I returned the bike, I talked to Julie who I had met online. Julie, an amiable midwestern woman, married an Italian whose family owns a hotel in Pineto. She arranged for me to meet Vito who could help me with obtaining dual US/Italian Citizenship. Vito helps applicants from South America and has an apartment in Roseto degli Abruzzi where he houses people while they acquire their citizenship. This typically takes three months in Italy. I had an appointment at the Italian Consulate in Chicago set for late November to hand in my application and documents for citizenship. The latest news online was that it would take 2 years after your appointment in Chicago to hear that your citizenship was finalized. Vito could do it in three months and I had an apartment lined up. His prices were not too bad, but of course much more expensive than Chicago. I grabbed a slice of pizza and walked quickly to Julie’s family hotel.

Julie interpreted as Vito does not speak English and my Italian is intermediate at best. Vito has been a friend of Julie’s family for a long time and I felt comfortable that he was reliable and professional. I showed him images of my grandparents’ birth certificates and we talked about the logistics. At one point, Julie was called away to work at the desk and we talked with no interpreter. I understood maybe half of Vito’s conversation. This was all very exciting. At my age, 3 months versus 2 years seems like a big difference. I walked back to my room with the satisfaction of having accomplished two goals – I found an apartment in Pineto and a way to gain my citizenship more efficiently.