Archive | November 2013

Protest in Naples

When you think of Italy do you think of fresh produce and local markets? The talk of the past few weeks is all about the unsafe soil and air that have led to a cancer surge. There have been a handful of articles and studies done by local companies and the military basically informing us that we should not eat local produce. It has led to a protest, not the first and most likely not the last. There was one a month ago in our town of Gricignano, but this one was much larger and article worthy…sums up what we’ve been hearing so much about nicely.



(AFP) – Rome, Nov. 17 – Thousands protested Saturday in Naples over illegal waste dumps blamed on the mafia that generate toxic fumes.
Between 30,000 and 100,000 people braved heavy rain for the protest, according to varying estimates from police and organizers.
Demonstrators chanted “No to Camorra” in reference to the Neapolitan mafia and some protestors carried photographs of relatives who they said had died from cancer.
The protest movement is calling for the decontamination of polluted land and water and blames the mafia for creating hundreds of illegal dumps in the area.
Locals call the zone between Naples and Caserta the “Land of Fires” or “Triangle of Death” due to the toxic fumes produced by burning waste.
Among the protesters were the mayor of Naples, environmental groups and local figures including the singer Nino d’Angelo and Father Maurizio Patriciello, one of the first to hit out against the problem.
Three tons of bread baked using ingredients from “clean” fields in the region were distributed to protesters.
The organization Legambiente said that in 22 years some 440 businesses located in central and northern Italy have buried around 10 million tons of industrial waste in the area.



Bucharest, Romania

For Veteran’s Day Justin and I went to Bucharest in Romania. Sadly, inside many of the places we visited taking photos was not allowed, so I have pulled some images from the internet.

The first day we visited the National Art Museum of Romania (Romanian medieval icons and a European collection with a temporary exhibit on Paul Gavarni-excellent), the Parliament (lots of grand ball-room style rooms), The Village Museum (traditional houses from Romania over time), the Arch of Triumph, and we walked around all over the place until the wee hours of the night amusing ourselves with locally made Pálinka liquor our hotel gave us.

The second day we hired a driver and drove out of Bucharest up to the Prahova valley and the surrounding areas of Brasov to visit towns, castles, and fortresses. The Peleș Palace (the summer residence of Romanian King Carol I) was stunning and intricate. We walked around the town of Brasov (really excellent town) and visited the Black Church. The Rasnov Fortress had great views over the country side. We also visited the Bran Castle with all the Dracula lore based off of Vlad the Impaler. Our driver handed us each a clove of garlic just to be on the safe side before we went inside.

The third day we slept in late and ended up walked around the Old Center and the surrounding neighborhoods in Bucharest until we flew out in the evening. Naroc! Cheers!

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