Category Archives: babilonia

39 Days


It’s been a long journey. I’m having difficulty remembering that five weeks ago I was a student at BABILONIA in Taormina, Sicily. I’ve traveled, made new friends, seen new places, revisited and glorified in the treasures of Tuscany, delighted in the company of Telma, reveled in the remembrances with Sally and Johanna. It’s been a long and wondrous journey.

As I sit in the Doubletree near Heathrow, I’m reflecting on these past weeks with gratitude, anticipation, and wonder. I’ll share some secrets.
. . .I was brought to tears walking down a small vicolo, alleyway, in Modica, after acknowledging to myself that I can do something I’d never imagined possible. . .speak, and almost, sometimes, understand Italian.
. . .I adore Italy and all things italian. . .even half-italian, like Don.
. . . I believe this will be my final 39 day trip for a long time, for a variety of circumstances.
. . .i can travel through 3 climates with a carry-on bag that’s been crushed and filled with things I never intended to buy.
. . . We shared this trip with Nana Weinberger. Her ashes lie under a lemon tree in Sicily, in the Ionian Sea, in the Alacantara Gorge, in the garden of Bristol Cathedral, and on a beach in Sicily. She was a traveller and we intend to keep her traveling!
. . .I missed my mother on her birthday, November 8.
. . .I worry about my family when I’m away.
. . .Im extraordinarily grateful for opportunities. It’s really about seeing the possibilities and having the courage or stupidity to follow through.

A few outtakes of photos. . .









Con Te parterò. . . Time to say goodbye. Wheresweinberger closes today, until the next adventure. Where?? When?? Chissa!. . .Who knows?!

L’ultimo giorno!


It’s already my final day of school. These five days of learning, laughing, and effort have garnered me new international friends, more confidence in speaking Italian, a love of Taormina, and enhanced curiosity and excitement about the next few weeks as I travel in Sicily.

I completed my three night cooking class with teacher Donatella and new friend Cristiana from Germany. Last night’s menu consisted of a special Sicilian pesto with spaghetti, fried zucchini with raisins, chicken with orange marmalade in an orange sauce. Top this off with homemade cannolis and wine. . . .yes,. I’ll invite you to dinner when I return!


This morning I finished classes. Classe numero uno is grammar. I’m more familiar and confident with mi, ti, si, ci, vi, gli, lo, la, li, le, and gli. . . .singular, plural, masculine, feminine.. . . direct and indirect object pronouns. A challenge for me, for sure, but isn’t that why I came here?

My grammar teacher Anita. . .


Classe numero due is conversazione. Lots of fun, activity, give-and-take amongst students.

My conversation teacher Anna. . .


No photo of Peppe, my private lesson teacher. Darn!

My feeling about BABILONIA. . .


Red…no longer my favorite


Remember those teachers who took your homework and it came back covered in red!! Well, my teacher, Anita, didn’t mark this, but I got out my old trusty red pen while we were reviewed our homework. Take a look:


Yep, a lot of RED!!! Keep repeating….this is fun…this is fun!

PS. . . .a private lesson with Peppe set me right!  I’m on my way to erasing what I know about English and replacing it with italian.