Sweet people…Castro dei Volsci–

IMG_5722IMG_5718  IMG_5682IMG_5688BAM!  After only three days here it feels like we are all family. . .this is what travel is all about: connecting with people who at first seem different from you, but who are in actuality the same as you.  We are all full of joy, love, kindness, and generosity, and all we need is the opportunity to unleash these feelings, then BOOM! we do our part to help improve the human condition, if only on just a small scale.  Nevertheless, it is these small-scale gestures that can save humanity. . .if only everyone everywhere held this same point of view. . .if only.

I send you positive vibes from Pasqualino, Antonella, Marianna, Annalisa, Mario, the folks at Mastropizza, and everyone else here in Castro dei Volsci. . .feel them. . .they have the power to change the world.

To see more amazing images from around planet Earth simply click on a location of your choice in the category menu on the ‘About’ page of this blog. . .do it. . .you can go just about anywhere that you like right here, right NOW.

It’s lovely out there.

Pizza makes us happy–

IMG_5720IMG_5719 IMG_0011IMG_5721I am more of a walking cliche that usual today. . .I am gobbling pizza in Italy–so original, right?  Right.  But who cares when it is this good. . .above you see a wonderful creation from a place called Mastropizza here in Castro dei Volsci, Lazio region, Italy.  We head to the Fontana Square in the center of town, walk up a hill with a nearly-full moon shining down on us as the sun sets, have a seat at Mastropizza, and let this dude create magic for us.  I have no problem ingesting this whole pie made just for me because the crust is light and airy, the sauce is tomato-ey and delectable, the cheese is smooth and gooey, and the toppings are fresh, delicious, and prepared with love. . .mmmm, aaaahh!

I send you incredibly satisfying vibes from Mastropizza in Castro. . .feel them. . .they will help you grow big and strong.

To see more wonderful images from around our teeny-tiny planet simply click on a location of your choice in the category menu on the ‘About’ page of this blog. . .do it. . .you can go just about anywhere that you like right here, right NOW.

It’s lovely out there.

Breakfast of champions…Castro–

IMG_5740 IMG_5738 IMG_5737 IMG_5736Our host, Pasqualino, serves up some of his personal stash of prosciutto, capocollo, and salsiccia di Castro dei Volsci along with my leftover pizza, sheep’s milk cheese, olives, acqua frizzante, and lots of red wine for our breakfast this morning, and I cannot be any happier or more satisfied. . .perfect way to start the day–salut!

Everything tastes great!  I mean this is regular everyday food for the folks here in Castro, and it is all tastier than anything available to us in the U.S.. . .place, temperature, local flora, warm breezes, atmosphere, and people all contribute to the overall deliciousness of all of these products. . .bellissimo!

I send you extremely chilled-out vibes from our breakfast table here in Castro dei Volsci. . .feel them. . .they are most-worthy of your attention.

To see more amazing images from around planet Earth simply click on a location of your choice in the category menu on the ‘About’ page of this blog. . .do it. . .so much to see and soooo little time.

It’s lovely out there.

Municipal workers extraordinaire–

IMG_5662 IMG_5666 IMG_5668The lovely ladies you see above, Carolina and Rosella, are two of the fabulous staff members in the municipal office of Castro dei Volsci who helped me find the birth record of my great-grandfather, Loreto Neroni.  He was born here in 1890, and according to the record book, the mother and father had to get married AFTER he was born to make everything legitimate.  Yes, another fellow born out of wedlock with parents who attempted to “do the right thing” by marrying after his birth.  Things must not have gone very well because in 1902, when Loreto was just twelve years old, he left town, somehow made his way to Naples, boarded a ship called the Karamania, and steamed over to Ellis Island in New York to find his way in the world. . .wow!  The rest is history, as they say, cuz he then eventually grew up, met my great-grandmother, gave birth to my grandmother, who then gave birth to my mother, and here I am today. . .voila!!

It’s fun learning about our heritage–most of the time.  I send you personal history vibes from Castro dei Volsci. . .feel them. . .they may move you to find out a bit more about your heritage, as well.

To see more wonderful images from around planet Earth simply click on a location of your choice in the category menu on the ‘About’ page of this blog. . .dive on in. . .so much to see and soooo little time.

It’s lovely out there.

Exploring our roots–

IMG_5655 IMG_5651 IMG_5650 IMG_5663BAM!  Above you see me hangin’ with a dude called, Ermenegildo Neroni, who is apparently a distant cousin or uncle or mine living here in Castro dei Volsci, Lazio region, Italy.  We popped into the town municipal office where the staff here found the birth record for my great-grandfather, Loreto Neroni. . .they then called Ermenegildo who lives just a five-minute walk away, and he came over to say “hell0″ to me. . .bellissimo!  It turns out that ‘Gildo’ is a retired cop here in town who everyone knows and respects. . .now everyone knows and respects me, too–jaaa!! Exploring our roots can be fun, and it is especially wonderful when the people involved are enthusiastic and genuinely interested in helping folks like me find folks with whom we may share a connection.  Being alive is amazing, and it is made all the more so when we reach out and share some human moments with others who are striving to enjoy the passage of time, just as we are, before we all return to stardust. I send you family vibes from Castro dei Volsci, Italy. . .feel them. . .they are some of the best things we have to hang on to. To see more amazing images from around planet Earth simply click on a location of your choice in the category menu on the ‘About’ page of this blog. . .dive on in. . .you can go just about anywhere that you like right here, right NOW. It’s lovely out there.

#1 inn…Castro dei Volsci, Italy–

IMG_5536IMG_5640 IMG_5643IMG_5561BOOM!  Here we are hangin’ in the number one place to stay if you ever visit Castro dei Volsci in the Lazio region of Italy: a place called La Locanda Del Ruspante.  Above you see us with the owner, Pasqualino, his wife and co-owner, Antonella, his P.R. person, Annalisa, and his key staff member, Marianna.  This team of four incredible folks is doing everything to make our stay here as fabulous as possible. . .they are preparing great food for us, sharing wonderful wines with us, keeping our room super-clean, and most importantly, they are sharing the authentic spirit of hospitality, kindness, and joy that we always look for when traveling around our tiny planet.  Please choose to stay here when you find yourself in this region, and I gar-ron-taaaay that you will be totally satisfied.

I send you warm and human vibes from La Locanda Del Ruspante here in Castro dei Volsci. . .feel them. . .they will make you feel happy to be alive.

To see more amazing images from around planet Earth simply click on a location of your choice in the category menu on the ‘About’ page of this blog. . .do it. . .so much to see and soooo little time.

It’s lovely out there.

Sweet moments…Castro dei Volsci–

IMG_5623 IMG_5622 IMG_5609 IMG_5605POW!  You arrive in a new town, yer not sure what to do, so you start wandering around. . .and the next thing you know you are enchanted by the sweet moments and images that can be captured and stored away forever and ever in yer memory bank. . .mmmm, aaaahh!…this is all you have to do anywhere–just wander around and appreciate all of the sweet moments that occur wherever you happen to be.  In the above case, you see us doing this in Castro dei Volsci, Italy, the hometown of my great-grandfather, Loreto Nerone.  Loreto was born here in 1890, he left here in 1902, traveled to Naples, boarded a ship called the Karamania, steamed to Ellis Island in New York where he arrived in October of 1902, made his way to Michigan, mated with my great-grandmother, Marie, and the rest is history, as they say.  Go explore your roots some time, you will enjoy. . .I gar-ron-taaaay!!

I send you exploring-your-roots vibes from Castro dei Volsci, Italy. . .feel them. . .they are more fun than you think.

To see more amazing images from around planet Earth simply click on a location of your choice in the category menu on the ‘About’ page of this blog. . .do it, do it, do it. . .so much to see and sooooo little time.

It’s lovely out there.