The third in a series of transcriptions of my experiences traveling with my wife and her family in Italy. The originals were scribbled on whatever pieces of paper were handy and are presented here unedited.
26 Mar 2002: Directions from a resident businessman to Calitri—to make up for inadequate signage, he sends us an hour out of our way north, then down through lots of hill towns—and wheat fields—and wind farms. Half an hour after a declaration from il mio suocero that one would have to be crazy to live here, that he understands why his parents left, and that as far as he was concerned they could have it (occasioning a response from mom: “stop being such a nutty old coot!”)—we find Calitri. The Hotel Ambasciatore desk clerk Ten-Su (!) tells us that the Calitri Lucadamos had tried to find us the previous night.
We go to the records office at the Comune and discover that they have no information about the predecessors of the emigrating Lucadamo, Angelo Maria, except the names of his parents, Carmine and Teresa Schiavone. It is decided that the birth date we have for Teresa S is incorrect—she could not possibly have had Angelo M when she was 49.
We meet the young Cinzia L. who runs the town biberia—she is charming and friendly and calls the family to let them know we have arrived. Later as we discover the hotel has no heat we decide to return to Avellino. Just then all the relations show up. We spend two hours conversing in Italian to discover that there are one or two Carmine and Angelo Lucadamos in each generation for as long as anyone can remember, so finding ours will be nearly impossible—and take our leave after Cinzia gifts us with a ton of wine. We take the road back in the direction of Lione, solving the question of how to get back without a very long journey. Dinner at a trattoria—very good pasta.