Friday, July 15, 2011

Summer is Sizzling

Summer has really kicked into gear now. Two weeks of hot weather, more people in the stores of beach towns, brushfires, evening concerts, club events and festivals.

 The brushfire across the valley today is almost 600 acres, but a layer of marine air overhead is keeping it from really exploding (hey there old colleagues--I remember some fire behavior details) The temp today is 32C/90F with 53% rh. It’s a typical arson fire done by someone who likes mushrooms or other plants that do well after fire. I can see the line the guy walked this morning to expand the fire, perpendicular to the wind direction. Costly to the government, but the tanker planes are entertainment for me. 12 seconds for those planes to scoop-up 1400 gallons of sea water as I watched thru binoculars. Check last summer’s posts for photos of the Canadairs.
Last weekend a local jeep club held a rally here.  

Most of the 4x4 rigs had huge aggressive tyres and some were equipped with snorkels for fording deep streams. They went mud “bogging” below the village where we walk sometimes, and they had other competitions later in the day. Suffice to say, there is no Tread Lightly ethic in Calabria! Several were flying American or Confederate American flags. Hmmm, is there an influence from the outside? At least it was not sponsored by Bud Light beer. Come si dice “Bubba” in Italiano?

The newest bar in town, just 58 steps from our house, has had live music twice already and it is relaxing to get a cold drink or gelato and listen to the tunes. This was a jazz trio. 

The nice thing about these summer nights is that all ages are represented. It’s refreshing to see kids that are not glued to an electronic game and who play together outdoors. 

The middle of July is when tourists start arriving in Scalea and you do notice the change. Monday, the main supermarcato in town was overwhelmed at 8,30 because they had not boosted their staffing. Only 3 resisters open and queues with 20 people waiting in each. Today they had it going with 6 of 12 registers. Come August, I try to be waiting outside at 8,00 when the doors open to beat the rush.

Scalea is a great town for vacationers in that you can walk to everything. Being a watcher-of-things, I have picked up on the habits of the beach crowd. First out the door in the morning around 8,30 are the Pakistani beach vendors. The Pakistanis are the majority with a few other nationalities. We ran into a vendor while swimming the dog who had been in our Italian class. Very nice fellows and they trudge up and down in the hot sun all day selling trinkets, beach toys, jewelry and clothes. Hard way to earn a living. 
Next on the streets between 9 and 10 AM are lines of people headed to the sea with their chairs, towels and umbrellas. I could not help but put a label on them – they are the morning migration of the lemmings headed to sea.  Hence, watch for lemmings crossing the road. 

All towns around here have festas and things happening all summer. The companies that lease the lighting displays to each town must do well. The Scalea displays went up earlier this week and the same company is erecting displays in our town today. There is more money spent on such things in the summer than for Christmas or New Years. I suppose because more people are around and a festive environment can encourage the spending of money?  Saturday is a big Madonna festa of some sort with fireworks. We always watch them from the terrace here. 

I have a tendency to whine about humidity now and then, but one member of the family likes to soak up the rays wearing a heavy black coat. 
Buona estate tutti, Guido


  1. I bet that you are glad that you settled in Calabria instead of a city like Florence or Rome that gets hot without any sea breezes. Too bad the USA can't learn something from Italy and the other countries that know how to LIVE! As usual I loved your pictures!

  2. You bet. We are taking lessons on living. More nite life all the time.

  3. It all sounds so familiar. We miss Italy even more now! Enjoy the summer!

  4. Thanks J&T, we are. Late start on it, but it's wonderful.

  5. A great portrayal of summer in your region.

  6. Fabulous account of summer. I love the candid photos.

    Your line "Saturday is a big Madonna festa of some sort" - just perfect description of the numerous festas.

  7. Thanks, LLM and Sue! You two must have been busy too, haven't heard from you in a while.



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