27 July 2019


I was needing to tighten the fasteners on a piece of furniture on our terrace this morning and used this tool that I had brought with us from the US when we first moved here in 2006. I know Craftsman isn't what it used to be, but this tool has been a great all-purpose utility item and has been very durable.

I can use it whether I am changing a door lock or assembling an IKEA item. The selection of bits are durable and the ratchet feature is an arm saver. The variety of tools available here in Italy has improved over the years but I have not seen this type of this quality.

14 April 2019

Towns of Basilicata: Craco

An abandoned town since the 1960's, Craco is surreal and has been used for several films.  The hulking outlines of once-grand buildings stand on the hill and the ghost-town is now a tourist attraction operated by the new town.

Some surnames your ancestors from Craco might have include: Montemurro, Seccafico, Rinaldi, Grossi, Lacopeta, Mormando.

06 October 2018

Rinnovo Patente

I obtained my Italian drivers license in June 2013 and since I was already over the 50 year age mark it was only valid for 5 years. I have recently completed the renewal process and here in Basilicata it isn't complicated, just requires a bit of running around (and various fees).

First you need to have your assigned doctor complete a form that you are fit to drive - 20 €.

Obtain properly sized photos - 5 €.

Pay three different taxes and fees at the post office - 43.20 €.

Finally go to the ASL office in Potenza and have your vision checked and the request completed.

Once I did the last step, my new license arrived in the mail three days later: pay the special delivery - 6 €.

The ufficio motorizzazione civile that I dealt with to get my original patente was not involved in the renewal process.

I'm good for another 5 years!

30 October 2017

Time change...

We changed our clocks this week and have had some spectacular sunrises recently. One of the advantages of mountain living.

27 July 2017

Basilicata Antipasto

Now this is what you call an antipasto from Basilicata:  Aglianico wine and tasty peperoni cruschi!

08 March 2017

Towns of Basilicata: Guardia Perticara

Once you arrive by the winding mountain roads you will quickly be charmed by the stone walls of Guardia Perticara. Montano, Leudisio, Vomero, Grezzi, Carcia, Santa Lucia, Lavella are some of the family names originating from Guardia Perticara.