More Holy Week, even a Running Madonna!

Dear Ceci, Finn, Gus, Kieran, and Mary –

I can see from Facebook pictures that you had fun on Easter (even Mary, who had a bad cold?). When we Skype, you must tell me all about it.

I already wrote you about Easter @ Auntie Elizabeth’s studio  in Cianciana, but I couldn’t fit in everything.  Today I’m going to back up and tell you some more about Good Friday, the day we remember Jesus died.

During the morning and afternoon of Good Friday, the townspeople walk in a long procession to a hill, called Monte Calvario, at the edge of town. These photographs are from there (click on each one, and you can read a little more).

On Good Friday night, the men you saw walking down from Monte Calvario return there. They take the statue down from the cross, place it in a glass coffin, and carry it down, through the town, to the main church. It all happens very late at night. That is one reason I didn’t go (but I heard them!).
The other reason I didn’t go is that IT TAKES THE MEN CARRYING THE STATUE 3 HOURS! Here is a video someone else made. You probably don’t want to watch the whole 5 minutes, but a minute will give you an idea of what I heard. The “Lamento” is the very slow song they begin to sing a minute into the video – listen. I think you’ll hear how sad it is.

Can you guess why it takes the men 3 hours? They walk 3 steps forward, and 1 step backwards, the whole way, the whole time carrying the statue.So, Good Friday is very sad, and Holy Saturday, too. Everything just feels empty. And then at Mass on Holy Saturday, as I wrote before, there is great excitement, and the bells ring, celebrating the resurrection.


At noon, in the main street, everybody in the village goes to watch for 3 statues:
the Risen Christ (San Salvatore)

Mary (Madonna), and St. Michael, S. Michele,
perform the last Easter scene. Three times, the d’Angelo family men carry their family’s angel statue from from S. Salvatore down the street to…

I will see some of you next week, and I already saw Mary this weekend (so big! so loving to talk!), and will see her in a month. I can’t wait!



SUN & SEA & FOOD in Sicily


We stopped for lunch along the Ionian Sea.  Our waiter  said this calamari  had just been caught today.  It tasted delicioius — so fresh!

(Click on thumbnails to enlarge)
Dear Chloe, Ceci, Finn, Gus, Kieran, and Mary –

I am writing this to Chloe Schmidt, too, because it’s her grandma I’m travelling with, and I’m pretty sure Chloe would like to see where her grandma has been this week.

If you look at a map of Sicily, you’ll see that it is surrounded by water.  It is an island very near the bottom of the “boot” of Italy. We have been traveling along the coast of Sicily. This means we have been driving along the sea and through tunnels and over mountain passes, to see all the beautiful towns and cities. Today we passed the volcano, Mt. Etna. Do you know about volcanoes? If not, be sure to ask mom or dad. Look closely at this picture, and you will see the smoke from the small eruptions that have been coming from Etna this week.


Yesterday we went to an outdoor MARKET. It was as big the Fairgrounds and sells everything, from small animals to all kinds of food and clothes, to toothpaste and bracelets.

Bunnies and birds were for sale at the market.

Bunnies and birds were for sale at the market.


Spidey at the market!

Peggy wished we had a kitchen yesterday, because she is a great cook, and the market had amazing seafood.

Peggy wished we had a kitchen yesterday, because she is a great cook, and the market had amazing seafood.

We just arrived in Cefalu today. It probably looks a little like Florida or Mexico to you. To us, it seems like the most beautiful place we’ve visited in Sicily. Here is the picture I just took from the balcony of our little apartment:

Cefalu vista