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Meet the parents 2005
(Click on the images for a larger version.)
(~20min before I meet the parents)
Passport control officer: So Mr. Mogno, how long will you be staying in the United States?
Mr. Mogno (with a strong italian accent): 10 years

So you can see Ilaria's parents aren't so fluent in English, and my Italian is much worse than their English. This would be an interesting experience.
I drove us (Ilaria, Fernando, and Mariassunta) to Newport, Rhode Island - home to many millionaires. To give them the true American experience, I made sure to get pulled over by the police along the way.
These were real Italians. Unlike Ilaria, they were wine drinking, espresso drinking professionals who weren't afraid of a little onion and garlic.
cafe 2
But let's finish our drive to Newport.
Just outside Newport, there are big houses
along the rocky coast.
I spotted a Ferrari and chased it with my turbo-nitro 1990 Toyota Camry, so Ilaria could take this picture for me (not sure if her parents were cheering me on in Italian in the back seat or praying to Madonna and lo spirito santo that I would slow down on the tortuous road)
Old towns must have nice little churches.
But this one had a seriously American motorcycle too.
Let's see one more mansion before we leave.
And drive to the home of the pilgrims, Plimoth Plantation. It was supposed to be a neat place with lots of people dressed up in period clothing, but it was closed when we arrived.
plimoth Rock
So we went to see, Plimoth Rock, one of those tourist destinations that makes everyone say, "that's it?" But hey it's a rock, what were we expecting...
And the replica Mayflower next to it is kinda interesting.
Tourist in front of a sign.
Accidenti, Fernando can cook!!! Mio dio.
A few days later it was sunny outside, and we walked through the park on the way to John and Gabriella's place in Beacon Hill for an Easter Lunch. (be warned if you ever go to an Italian's for food on Sunday, it takes many hours [at least 3]. And go easy on the first course, you ain't even got started yet)
half Street
In Beacon Hill, the property is so valuable they sell it in halves.
Now that's an Italian family.
John and Gabriella live near John Kerry's house, so we stopped by for a look at the ugliest building on the block (it really is).
Ciao Gabriella, here's some wine from Italy.
We went up on the roof to checkout Beacon Hill and the Backbay from above.
Ah yes, now there's something American.
before Dinner
Around this time, I'm wondering what kinda crazy yummy Italian food we're about to have. But guess what?
They made Moroccan food! (but it was still crazy yummy)
Traditions: Italians eat one of these (hollow) chocolate eggs for easter
and one of these dove, Colomba, cakes too.
After the meal, we went for a walk to see the oldest statue of Christopher Columbus in the United States (how's that for a piece of random knowledge)
Two days later, we went with some friends to the Celtics game.
celtics 2
Fernando gave the game a serious analysis. Really, this dude is a thinker.
And Julien's cute Belgian gal, Ledivine, is either a super intense basketball watcher, or she needs a pair of glasses.
celtics 3
So I leave you with this pic, because the next event was my bday and I didn't want to bring my camera. The best parts: learning about making wine, hearing Fernando and Mariassunta's stories, and seeing the little pieces of Ilaria in her parents, well you just can't photograph them.