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COVID AND WINTER

COVID AND WINTER

By on Mar 3, 2021 in Blog | 4 comments

COVID AND WINTER           “Now is the winter of our discontent . . .”. This opening phrase of Shakespeare’s Richard III may encapsulate the present mood for many of us –   Our most recent Blog entry was last Fall after a return from a trip in the south of Italy by car. We commented at the time it had been fortunate we had made the trip when we did because on our return, COVID imposed restrictions tightened up. Restrictions have remained in force ever since, with some minor variations. We are still under a 10:00 PM curfew and the variations involve how widely we can travel and how much we have to rely solely on restaurant ‘take-out’ for dining when not home prepared. In the not-too-distant past, there were coming together rituals we could participate in to bring some brightness into the encroaching gloom of Fall and Winter. But not so this year. An invisible scourge has descended on all of us and a succession of setbacks seem part of a path out of this viral malady. Finding resilience in the face of anxiety is taxing. Against this reality, an early perception of our elected new home has still remained with us. Because Ascoli is somewhat self contained, the perception of a heightened sense of community solidarity has made an impression on us. But over the past year, so many public manifestations of that solidarity have been cancelled to avoid becoming COVID super spreader events. For the first time in over sixty years, the signature Ascolani Summer Quintana Medieval Festival was cancelled. Then Christmas and New Year observances were very much subdued as has been the Carnevale festivities, all without the typical opulent decorations in the piazzas and tightly packed coming together of people enjoying themselves. The regular and readily accessible cultural performance events have also been cancelled. The joy of sharing a protracted meal together with a group of friends around a common table is now also just a memory. Ascoli is subdued. We are relieved to say we continue to be well and safe as are our expat and Italian friends. But we do what we can and look for something to get our minds off the...

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