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No, this woman about is not our family. She is the proprietor that we were lucky to meet while eating in her restaurant establishment (or at least trying to) the night after we met our Italian family.

So, I didn’t take many pictures because living in the moment was so much more beautiful. My mother was taking plenty for all of us anyway. Unfortunately, somewhere between a hotel, and a bus though, we lost her camera. Someone took it, we left it, it’s a terrible mystery. We only have a few iPhone photos and our memories. It gives us even more reasons to go back to make sure it was all real!

From Giulianova to Mosciano back to the Adriatic in a day -we were tired with excitement and decided to grab a slice of pizza on our walk from city center back to our hotel. That’s when we met the lady we could never forget.  The one who continued to say our entire dinner ‘Family in the Water, Family in the Water!’ I think she meant family on the water, but we couldn’t be sure.

‘Manga, manga, manga’ the proprietor called to us as soon as we entered the pizza place. It should have been the first clue to us that if she was so interested in talking the last thing we’d be doing was eating. Alas though, we each ordered slices from behind the glass and a woman behind the counter grabbed them to stick them in the oven. We sat down at a long wooden table. The place was quaint but without any more customers. A gentleman came in to rest and read the paper while he awaited his pizza to go, but when the owner wouldn’t stop talking to him, he left. She continued to chat to us. Fifteen minutes had passed and the first person’s pizza came out from the oven. The rest of us were still hungry. She hovered over our table talking, asking questions, cutting us off and waved her hands signaling and stating again ‘manga, manga, manga!’ Then, would be back the next minute without our food to start all over again.

We didn’t ever figure out what happened to the slices Dad and my husband had selected for the oven. We did squeeze in telling her that we were in Giulianova to see our family, which meant that along with the manga proclamations the woman still had something else to chant: Family in the water, family in the water, manga, manga, manga! When we asked for the bill, figuring we’d need to find food elsewhere she said to wait, the woman behind the counter was preparing something special for us and out came a nutella pizza desert. That was nice, maybe she felt sorry for us. But, I felt sorry for her. We asked both ladies to jump in a picture with us before we left the restaurant laughing and still hungry.

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