Where is the Sicilian Housewife?

Hello darlings!

Sorry about my very long silence. It has provoked rumours of pregnancy (I am too old, mentally not biologically), lottery winning (I wish!) and falling down a large pot hole in one of Sicily’s main motorways (I just invented that one actually).

None of this is true, but… Drumroll…. I am at last allowed to announce that I have a job in the UK, and I have left Sicily’s sunny shores. I am now the CEO of a new charity founded by British billionaire John Caudwell, to improve the medical care of people with Lyme disease in the UK and beyond.

You thought I only knew how to burn the pasta and make fun of Sicilian driving, didn’t you?

The Sicilian Housewife enjoying her first taste of England after a long time away
I introduced Hubby to rhubarb. He was not impressed.
My sister showed Hubby what “tea time” means in England

As some of you will know, my kiddo and I both have Lyme disease, and this is one of the reasons why the job means so much to me, more than any other job could ever matter. Lyme is a terrible disease which becomes a chronic, incapacitating illness in many of its victims, yet the health authorities in the UK, as in every other country I know of, are still ignoring the scientific evidence of over 700 medical research papers and insisting that it can be easily cured with a couple of weeks of antibiotics. If you still feel ill after that, apparently, you have Post Lyme disease Syndrome, a different condition entirely, of as-yet unknown cause (I swear on my mother-in-law’s life I am not making this up) except if you live in the UK, where you instead have CAN, which stands for Chronic Arthropod-borne Neuropathy. (If you don’t believe me, and personally I wouldn’t, just Google that).

These people are off their rockers and they definitely need to be brought to their senses with a bit of Sicilian Housewife common sense.

Since being offered this job I have been madly busy. I had three weeks in December to find and rent a house in England, enrol my son in a school, furnish the house, set up the wifi and other utility bills, buy two cars and two mobile phones for myself and my Intrepid Hubby, ship over some crates of clothes, lego and my trusty vintage computer from Sicily, and figure out how to use a central heating thermostat dating from 1972.

So how are we getting on in England?

Well, we are living in a small village called Alsager, a picturesque cluster of abnormally small semi-detached houses and charity shops huddled around the iconic Asda supermarket building. The vibrant village centre boasts not only a public library with wheelchair access but also a structurally sound primary school and a moderately sized veterinarian centre which caters both for pets and local sheep alike. What’s more, Alsager is mere minutes from the centre of Stoke-on-TrentΒ in Staffordshire, where it only rains twice a year on average (once from February to August and the second time from September to January).

My little lad is really happy in English school, and not just because the building is structurally sound! English culture with its emphasis on not shouting your head off really suits him too.

Hubby has made friends with the local farmers and buys amazingly good meat from them, and seems to be enjoying being a house husband. He went through a period of adjustment. For example, I told him that when you hang up the laundry in Stoke-on-Trent it will still be wet after five days or else have gone mouldy, and he thought I was just joking. He also thought he would be able to buy warm clothes in Sicily and still use them as his “warm clothes” once we got to England. He also thought he would stay indoors till it stopped raining, bless him.

Then one day he suddenly became more English than me and told me off for parking sqiffily and trying to sneak through a light that was just turning red.

England has a way of doing that to people.


71 thoughts on “Where is the Sicilian Housewife?

  1. So refreshing to read you again, my dear! I used to live in Middle Barton near Banbury. How about that? I know of what you speak. So glad about Luca – he does seem more the proper sort – and Marco will definitely adjust. Can’t wait to hear about the first MIL visit.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Welcome, welcome, welcome back, my dear! I was afraid you had ditched the Hubby, taken up with a Mafia Don, moved to Palermo, and given up the blog. By the way, my wife and I have been to Stoke-on-Trent twice. It rained both days. Deliriously happy to have you and your word processor back in my life!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Well, I did wonder about making Hubby carry the baton from now on, and calling it The Dangerously truthful Diary of a Sicilian House Husband.
      If he did that, you would get the terrible Inglishe mistaiks, ya know, but on the other hand you would at last get some really good recipes!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Hubby needs his own blog Dangerously truthful Diary of an English House Husband. Good to hear from you, and look forward to reading your blog again. Best wishes.


  3. Aha, suspicions confirmed!

    “She longs for the greenness of her native land. She pines for the picturesque cluster of abnormally small semi-detached cottages of Alsager, is it not? Already in imagination, she prepares rhubarb and engages in all the activities of the English lady.”

    OK, I’ll stop. But, if someone should offer you a Brough Superior SS 100 1925 motorcycle, just say no if you know what’s good for you.


    Liked by 1 person

  4. Congratulations on the new job! I didn’t know you had Lyme’s. What a nightmare. Funnily enough, the only reason I know Alsager is because the charity connected to my condition, The Raynaud’s & Scleroderma Society, is based in Alsager. It’s a small world! Good luck for the future!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. You need to come to the east coast of the US where we have a number of tick born diseases. I have had Lyme’s twice and Babesia once. You are so right they are not fun but serious and some tick born cases it can be fatal. It is truly reaching epidemic proportions here.I just finished a couse of doxycycline and awaiting the results of my tighe test. Please if you visit the US be aware of the dangers in some areas.


  6. The tea table looks like SO much FUN! Lots of jiggly colorful items and cookies and goblets. I hope your family is very happy, that your husband does not get homesick for SIcily, but you are not so far away. Congratulations on your new job. We here in Vermont USA have big problems with Lyme Disease (Olde Lyme, Connecticut is just a two-hour drive south of here). SO good luck with a cure and treatment. My best to you all.


  7. Great! A dream has come true, as it seems. Congratulations! Now the blog can be called “The Dangerously Truthful Diary of a British Houseman” πŸ™‚

    I really admire how you organized all that in only a few weeks. That is a capacity. No wonder that such an organizing talent had some trouble on Sicily.

    By the way, the blackmailing of the other mothers concerning the school in Sicily has ended now, too. Maybe, you will encounter other blackmailing, now. Maybe this time, you even will not notice it, since you are used to it, but your husband will!

    As Google Maps tells me, your home town is in the countryside. At least this can remind you of Sicily πŸ™‚ At least, I have learned now what “Asda” means.

    Only 0.7% Muslims in your region?! How is this possible? This is a very good situation to really integrate them into the British society. Congrats to your son, especially!

    And again your sister is on the stage, this time with a perfect tea time table. What have you said, am I right, your sister isn’t married yet?


  8. The new job and new home sounds awesome! Glad to hear everyone is more or less adjusting well to the transition :p Can’t wait to read your musings again!


  9. Mannaggia your ears must have been burning! I finished reading your book a few days ago and was wondering if il Mastrostronzo had fitted you with cement shoes! In bocca al lupo for your new job! Is your move permanent or time limited? Can’t wait till your suocera visits! I’ll bet she brings an extra valigia. Instead of filling it with religious souvenirs, she’ll bring the ironing contraption! Looking forward to new posts-oh and I loved the book! Ciao, Cristina

    Liked by 1 person

  10. A hearty welcome back, missed you terribly, your wit and humour, and also your musings about Sicily, my favourite place for holidays. Looks like I shall continue to miss Sicilian musings, more’s the pity, but I wish you well in your new life in Stoke. I shall just have to dip into your book to get that warm experience of life in Sicily and to help me remember my times there. I’m at the opposite end of the country, the Isle of Wight, so our weather experiences are very different. Settle down and enjoy life now and I hope your husband keeps enjoying it too. It can be traumatic after a little while for foreigners. I know (says she, darkly).


  11. Good grief….I hadn’t realised the lengths you have gone to in taking on this role to fight for us…..kudos and much gratitude to you and your supportive family!xx


      1. Mrs Semsible was like that, it was a novelty after the heat of Sicily. I think she became fed up with the cold damp and dark winter days.

        She loved how everything appeared to function in the UK


  12. Congratulations on the next chapter of your life and convincing your husband to move away from Mama. You will always be the Sicilian Housewife to me. Looking forward to your future writings.


  13. When I read your book and your blog ( ticks one ) I though…wow, she has an interesting life! And now this! I could not be happier .for you and all of us ,lyme community , you are just the right person ! πŸ™‚


  14. Super congrats! If anyone can put the Lyme Disease cause on the right track, light some illuminating fires, and have fun doing it, it is YOU! Holidays in Sicily will be more fun than actually living there. A big loss, though, is that Sicily now lacks your loving, teasing, hopeful presence. Well, they had their chance. Rock on.


  15. Enjoyed reading this post. Being married to a Sicilian who essentially grew up in Australia I will look forward to reading the back posts and any future posts on things Sicilian. Well done with the move,it’s huge and best of luck with the new job. Big change for you all.


  16. Oh no, I just wrote a huge comment to another post, encouraging you to become the next sindaco and now a few minutes later I read this post. Good for you though.
    Congratulations! All fine for me as long as you keep on writing. All the best for your new job.


      1. How did Lymes migrate across the Atlantic? I thought it was called Lymes because it’s epdemic began in Lymes, Connecticutt.


      2. Yes, Old Lyme Connecticut is where it was first recognised and formally described as a disease, but it always did exist all over the world. Except possibly Antarctica!
        That was my downfall when I was looking for a diagnosis for myself… I ignored Lyme disease as a possibility because I thought wrongly that it only existed in America. In reality the US military has parts of the UK down as global Lyme disease dangerous hot-spots.


  17. Please keep writing about your adjustment back to England. I have been in Italy for several years now and am considering the move back with Italian in tow so I would be very interested to hear how you and your husband go about it! Best wishes and good luck with the new job.

    Liked by 1 person

  18. Hi V. Occasional reader here. Just catching up and can’t believe you will be working for JC, it really is a small world!
    The Lyme disease and related illnesses world certainly needs your wit *and* Sicilian common sense. Non vedo l’ora! ;o)
    All the best with the readjustment and all, look forward to read more on it.


  19. Just stumbled upon your posting about Sicily and had to laugh, repeatedly. My belly is still reverberating. I love the parts I’ve read explaining your love of the people and country. I have to say I especially liked the post regarding looking for lodging in England and translating the realtor advertisements to your husband. “Bless him” indeed.


  20. Hi, I used to have regular emails when you put a new post up but I’ve had nothing in months. Just thought I’d check in to see if you are still around. Missed your musings. Should I re-follow you or am I just somehow being missed out.


    1. Yes, still around, thanks for asking! I have just had heart surgery and also work is very busy, hence the long silence. I plan to sit down and do a post at the weekend….


  21. I hadn’t been here in a while, I came because I missed your words. Congratulations on your new job, it’s good that (due to unfortunate reasons) it’s a job that means a lot to you, you will do it well. And indeed some Sicilian housewife sense is bonus in this role πŸ˜‰ xxx


So, what do you think?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s