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More information

I got more information from Emma, my soon-to-be boss, as to what I’ll be doing exactly during my internship. She said she focuses mostly on property sales and vacation rentals leaving little time for her to focus on another important aspect: tourism. That will be my main responsibility. I will basically organize trips, create itineraries and connect with resources from other areas for foreigners. She also added that she owns a wine bar which has live music and serves local wine. She wants to take it a step further and use her bar to host weddings and possibly create another kind of tourism (perhaps wine?). That’s where my help and expertise will come in.

I can’t ask for a more ideal internship! This is a perfect fit with what I have learned at ASU in the past two years and what I aspire to do professionally. Organizing trips and planning weddings are among the things I enjoy doing. And wine! I am a wine aficionado. Let me tell you — my taste buds have never tasted wine more tantalizing than that from Calitri!

Also, I have mentioned several times how everyone in Calitri is related, right? Well, my grandfather’s cousin, Maria, is married to Orazio, who turns out to be Emma’s grandfather’s brother! How about that?!

By the way, I learned that I will be without internet access at my flat in Calitri but I will have my own desk (oooh!) at the agency with free Internet access…. so I will definitely be in touch while I’m there!


Filed under Calitri, Europe, Italy 2009

Update on my summer internship.

I finally bought a ticket to Italy. I was able to find one that flies directly to Rome (with one layover in Philly) for cheap through (thanks to Eleanor for the link!). picture-5

I leave the day after my finals on May 13th and return on October 29th. That’s right – I’ll be in Italy for five months and half! I originally planned for three months but my friends and father encouraged me to stay as long as I can. I’m young (well, sort of!), single and fresh out of college. The timing really can’t be more perfect.

I will not be renewing my lease which is up on March 31st so in April and the first two weeks of May, I will be staying at either my dad’s or mom’s. I’ll store most of my furniture in a storage room and keep my prized possessions at my mom’s house. My friend, Kim, and my mom both said they would be more than happy to take turns taking care of my dog while I’m gone. So everything seems to be working out the way I had hoped!

If anyone’s considering visiting Italy this year, please let me know! You’d be more than welcome to stay with me in my flat.

I’m overwhelmed with the warm enthusiasm expressed by fellow calitrani about this news!

I’m so glad that it worked out! You will have to take a lot of pictures when you are there!!🙂 – Bernedette

What a great opportunity for you..wish I had done this as a young buck….keep a journal and maybe share it with us if you wish. – Roberto

Congratulations! Louise and I send our very Best Wishes. – Al

Congratulations….. Spring time in Calitri… you will love it….Nice apartment…….Auguri… and keep blogging to keep us current with your exploits….. – Vincent

BRAVO! – Elaine

congratulations that’s a wonderful experience for you. My wife Pat and I are planning to spend a few days in Calitri in September of this year will you still be there then? We would love to meet and see you. – Ray

If you need a porter, I can find a red cap that will fit me easily. Congratulations. – Shirley

How exciting! I am so happy for you. Everything will work out for you. You are amazing and have been amazing to all of us. – Barbara

Congratulations Jason!….that is wonderful for you. – Rick

Congratulations. – Madeline & Sal

Allow me to join the chorus of voices congratulating you on your internship. One more reason for me to visit Calitri… – Gabe

Congratulations on your internship, Jason. This is absolutely wonderful. I know you will have a wonderful time and take beautiful photos. (We’ve all seen your work. Great, innovative shots!) – Mario

I am so happy for you. To be in Calitri all those months. – Joy

Congratulations on your internship. What a thrill it must be to grow a hobby into a profession so to speak. And to spend the summer in Calitri getting paid (albeit not very much) to do something that has got to be the thrill of a lifetime. – Richard

Congratulations, so happy to hear good news. – Francine

…just want to add how happy I am for your upcoming internship plans in Calitri. What a wonderful experience for you both personally and professionally. How fortunate you are to have the chance to expand your knowledge first hand and with your own eyes. It’s a rare moment and one you will always cherish. Good luck… – Josie

I am so happy that you have received the internship and that you will be doing it in Calitri. It could not of happened to a more deserving individual. – Alfonso

And from my cousin in Milano:

Sono molto contento!!! Spero di venire a Calitri in questo periodo. – Michele

Wow! Their enthusiasm is inspiring and touching! This probably wouldn’t have happened if it wasn’t for them… so to them, I owe a huge grazie mille.

In other news, I’m considering the possibility of publishing a book with pictures I will take in Calitri upon my return. There’s a cookbook with calitrani recipes, a history book about Calitri, a book about immigrants from Calitri….so why not a photo book? Just a thought.


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Game night

My party last night was a great turnout, as evidenced in the pictures below!

Steph and Ty

Erwin and Randall

Playing the cork game, one of our favorite games.

Playing the cork game, one of our favorite games.

Madison and Mallory

Brandon, playing '3 wise men'

Jenna and Mara

They were laughing at this.

Siena and Mallory

Madison and Raven

Madison and Raven

More on my Facebook if you want to see them.

Fun night, indeed.


Filed under Pictures

Mi casa

I spent all morning cleaning my place in preparation for tonight’s game night. My place isn’t always this immaculate so I decided to seize the opportunity and snap pictures of my place while it lasts!

Click on the pictures to see the full image.

Dining Room / Kitchen

Dining Room / Kitchen

Pictures I took while my sister and I were in Europe last year.  Sorry the picture in the bottom right is hard to see....

Pictures I took while my sister and I were in Europe last year. Sorry the picture in the bottom right is hard to see...

I stole the above idea from the incredibly talented Tara Whitney.

Living Room / Dining Room

Living Room / Dining Room


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Registro dei matrimoni (1765-1801) for Calitri

Luigi Galgano apparently finally got permission from the bishop to publish the marriage records he painstakingly transcribed last year.

Go here to view them. Check it out. It’s a treasure trove for us calitrani!


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I knew about this for a while but I did not want to say anything just yet, in fears that I’d jinx it. But as of today, it is set in stone. I’m going to do what I’ve dreamed to do for a long time — complete my internship abroad.

Not just abroad, but in the very town that my family came from: CALITRI!

I will be working for a tourism agency as well as help out at a wine bar. I will probably leave for Italy right after my final exams on May 12th and then return by August 7th, just in time to be home for the birth of my nephew or niece who is due on the 9th. The woman who I will be working for owns several flats in town and is willing to accommodate me in a small, cozy one for only €200 a month (around $260).

Now, I just need to purchase a flight ticket (I’ll have to figure out how to pay for it!) as well as decide what I should do with my place. My lease is up on March 31st. Should I renew it or keep it and pay rent even if I won’t be there for 12 weeks? And I am going to need to find someone to take care of Siena while I’m gone (god, I’m going to miss her so much). Decisions, decisions.

I never thought in 100 years that this would happen. I have to pinch myself to make sure all this isn’t just a dream.


Filed under Calitri, Europe