**Spoiler alert, there are pictures in this blog, if reading on your phone you might not be able to view them
At dinner that night she told them she wuould be leaving the next day. She actually said she was going to visit family for a week and would email them whem she as coming back, but they knew she wasn't. They were not happy because they said they really needed the extra hands this week with painting the floor, etc.
I was debating when I would have to tell them my plans, but then the moment presented itself the next morning at 6:48 am, 2 minutes after she walked out the door. Marco said something about her leaving and then preceded to tell me that I would be painting the floor alone that day because Caterina would be gone most of the day and he had to do something else in his woodshop...and then I launched into it.
I said, " Yes I'm sorry to see her go. So the timing of this is really bad I know, but I actually have made plans to leave early as well. I plan to help you finish the floor but then I am going to help Riccardo prune his olive trees till I go to Rome."
He was silent and staring into his coffee and seething, and said "Well I guess that is life....... But I do not understand why people cannot honor their agreements."
I then told him that while yes, I was leaving early and leaving them without a WWOOFer for a week till the next one was scheduled to come that I had gone above and beyond for them, and worked my ass off. I said I appreciated their hospitality, but that I felt they were not honoring the WWOOF standards. And this is where we got into it........ He knew what the guidelines were but he said that farms are 8-10 hours of work a day and that he knows other farms that ask their WWOOFers to work that much to which I said, Yes but that's not right. We (wwoofers) are usually coming long distances, and paid a lot of money to get ourselves here and volunteer our time to you , that should be respected. You cannot take advantage of that, this is not free labor for you, it is meant to be an exchange and a cooperative effort.
Yada, yada, yada...... and then I went to feed the chickens and when I came back he had told Caterina and then she and I REALLY got into it on the stairs. Gawd forbid she be asked to run HER OWN FARM. She stormed out and Marco said he thought it would be best if I left that day. So I texted and emailed my Plan B if he could come get me asap because I smartly had packed the night before....within the hour I was gone.
As my Facebook status metions, my PLAN B rocks!I have my own room, my own bathroom, there's WiFi so I can use my own computer and we have been pruning the trees together. Today I worked a little more on my own and for close to 6 hours in total, but because I was enjoying it. I am also eating the way I expected to eat in Italy. Riccardo is lovely and generous and laid back and has the coolest dog and gaggle of cats. I can breathe a huge sigh of relief for the next 7 days :-)
Sooooooooooo now, because I have WiFi -- WHO WANTS TO SEE PICTURES??!!
Just landed, headed to hotel
headed to the train station
Colle Paradiso (main house)
the stable and chicken house
one of the olive groves
they obviously have lots of leftover tomatoes
these are the dried persimmons I mentioned in my last blog or two ago
interesting huh?, I'll find some cool way to make this into something
one of maybe 6 times we ate protein
the figs were ah-mazing!
kitchen with the tiniest stove ever, child size
I sat facing the fireplace, the chair that's pulled out
the WWOOF room
the computer room, living room, and extra bed
first day pruning the trees
2nd dayShall we dance? Doesn't it look like the one tree is dipping the other? Love it!
Post Colle Paradiso... went grocery shopping with Riccardo and Bardo in Poggio Mirteto
Riccardo's beautiful home....he restored his grandfather's old farmhouse
his olive trees
one of the cats, Rori, the baby
Sparky, the oldest (he's 12)
Blackyin addition to olive trees, he has an almond tree (l this one), apple trees, fig trees, peach trees, oak, elm, cherry, quince, etc
me writing this very blog :-)
Obviously, I have more than these pictures but I didn't have the energy or patience to upload them all here.....so for those of you on Facebook, be looking for a new album in the next day or two.