After a fantastic bonding session at Barbara’s dad’s 90th birthday, G’s 82 year old grandfather asked for my number. I was flattered. He’s the one who winks all the time, doesn't eat salt and likes to wind everyone up.
This morning he sent me a message that read ‘VUOI FARE UNA PICCOLO PASSEAGATA?’ (Do you want to go for a little walk?)
Obviously I said yes.
He arrived at the house at 8am in a huge 4x4, which came as a bit of a shock as he’s a very tiny old man. I thought we were just going to walk to the shops. I should've really seen where the day was headed when he asked me where my 'bastoncini' (hiking poles were).
This man should not be driving - it took us a good thirty seconds to set off because the hand break was still on. We drove out of the sun and high up into the shadows of the mountains, darting round tight corners and running through traffic lights. I thought, ‘this is it. This is how I’m going to die. On a hike with an old Italian man’.
We made it to the top of Porta Vedetta mountain and started what can only be described as a hardcore hike. We walked from one side to the other, hopping from one panoramic view to the next, pausing only for the occasional photograph and a focaccia break (old people always come prepared).
This man is fit and so funny I had to go for a wee in a bush. He also loves to speak very very fast Italian. After four hours I thought my thighs were going to burst (at one point he had to lift me over a fence) and my brain would probably combust from the overwhelming amount of new vocabulary being injected into it.
Brilliant for the Italian though. Will probably end up speaking like someone born in 1930.