Here's a few things I discovered in the past week on my rambles around the Internet. And there's a few photos on one of my town excursions a few weeks ago.
We've often driven past the Basilica of Saint Paul Outside the Walls on our way to the airport. Its an impressive sight from the highway and more impressive up close. It was raining the day I decided to visit but even in the rain the front courtyard was glorious. The present Basilica was build after a disastrous fire in July of 1823 which destroyed the 1400 year old church. The evening before the fire the dying Pius VII had nightmares of a fireball striking his beloved Basilica - its destruction was never revealed to him.
- My dear Scarlet Lady, Dora, provided a link the other day to a wonderful series of YouTube shows by the remarkable 93 year old Clara Cannucciari. Her Depression Cooking series has become one of the most popular on YouTube. Its a combination of practical and economical recipes and, more importantly I think, oral history. She has her own website and Laurent tells me she was interviewed on one of the major US network prime time shows. Even if you don't use her recipes her tales of the Great Depression are a living slice of history.
- And speaking of food the oft-quoted Opera Chic (the world press has become aware of what some of us have known for ages - she rocks) introduced me to a wonderful food blog: Orangette. In her own words Molly Wizenberg explains: So I started Orangette. Almost five years later, here I am, with this blog, a book, a monthly column in Bon Appétit, and a husband whom I met through this site. It’s been kind of insane - in a very good way, of course. I thank my lucky stars every night. Five years! I'm just wondering why I haven't discovered this great blog before.
- My buddy Yellowdog Grannie , from West, Texas, sent me this link to a fascinating virtual tour of a famous Chinese scroll painting: Along the River During the Ching-Ming Festival. It is lodged in the National Palace Museum in Taipei - part of the collection spirited off the mainland during the revolution. QhingMing is celebrated in one form or another throughout most of the Asia and there is a particularly lovely Vietnamese song that sings of the awakening of spring and this approbriate for a stroll through this remarkable website.
Swift swallows and spring days were shuttling by
of ninety radiant ones three score had fled.
Young grass spreads all its green to heaven's rim;
some blossoms marked pear branches with white dots.
Now came the Feast of Light in the third month
with graveyard rites and junkets on the green.
As merry pilgrims flocked from near and far,
the sisters and their brother went for a stroll.
- Michelle, who you may know by now drinks so much coffee that she swears if she were cut she'd be Bleeding Espresso, gave a shout out to a fun blog for those of us struggling with Italian. Diane Hales has a blog as part of her La Belle Lingua website. Becoming Italian Word by Word is a light-hearted way to find those words and phrases that we anglophones find so confusing. Example??? Well let's take "maleducato" - has to mean badly educated right? Well in a way yes, it actually means "ill-mannered". And in response to my Napolitano buddy Marco - then you ask why I have difficulty speaking Italian?????
- And as part of her Going Green series Michelle has some tips on what do to with used coffee grounds. Her commenters have added some dos and don'ts as well.