June 6, 2012
My wife is a doctor, who now works part-time. I also believe that as you grow older, it is very important to stay active. I am a member of the Northern Virginia senior slow-pitch softball league, started taking skiing lessons two years ago, and have recently begun to take golf lessons. I also have three children and, the joy of my life, three grandchildren.
I recently attended an Italian Cultural Society (ICS) meeting on Italian immigration to the United States. Anthony Galizia was present and spoke a bit.
I love everything about Italian food. My favorite Italian city to date is Florence. I also love reading mystery books, and my favorite series is by Magdalen Nabb, about Salvatore Guarnaccia, a Sicilian marshall in the carbinieri serving in Florence. I also very much like the Salvo Montalbano series by Andrea Camilleri. My favorite Italian film is Cinema Paradiso.
I started studying Italian two years ago, and am now finishing the Intermediate 3 level at ICS. After returning from my second trip to Italy, I vowed that for my third trip, I would act as the interpreter for my wife. I still have some ways to go. My conversational ability is spotty, so I have signed up for a conversation course at ICS for the summer. The only foreign language I can speak well is Chinese. I was in the Peace Corps in Korea in the 1960s, and have also studied French and Hebrew.
I am a retired U.S. Foreign Service officer, having specialized in China. I grew up in an Italian neighborhood in Brooklyn, New York, and my best friend at the time was Italian. I have been to Italy twice.
This was my first event. The people were friendly, and Anthony was very helpful as I tried to use the event also to increase my Italian vocabulary. He taught me the Italian terms for: Go Italy, attack, defend, shoot it, he should have shot it, why did he do that, etc.