130314-nicoleBuongiorno a tutti and welcome to On Location Italian! Now that we are into the month of March the cold, snowy days of winter are fading into the distance and leaving the way for some long awaited rays of sunshine and the clear blue skies of spring to take over. It therefore seemed the perfect season to visit the fattoria (“farm”) run by a friend that I have made here in Verona. So earlier in the week I took the short car journey ride with a group of friends to the beautiful fattoria just on the outskirts of Verona.

Now before I tell you about all the different animals I came across at the fattoria I have a slight confession. In contrast to all the controversy surrounding the horse meat scandal back home, here in Verona the eating of horse is perfectly acceptable and commonplace and you will struggle to find a restaurant that doesn’t sell cavallo (“horse”). I personally have never been able to bring myself to try a piece of Black Beauty himself. However, and this is where the guilty conscience starts to kick in, I have tried another popular Veronese dish of asino (“donkey”). You can therefore imagine my horror when I turned up at my friend’s fattoria only to discover that he had two donkeys. After making friends with these cute animals I think it is safe to say that whilst happy to embrace the Verona way of life including the cuisine, I will be sure to bypass the dishes containing asino in the future. Despite spending the majority of my time with the donkeys, the fattoria was also home to lots of polli (“chickens”), una capra (“a goat”), un maiale (“a pig”) and due oche (“two geese”). There was also a rooster, the Italian name for which I had to ask my friend. He told me “rooster” in Italian is gallo and shared an expression that his nonna (“gran”) used to tell him when he was growing up: andare a letto con le galline e svegliarsi col gallo, literally translated as “to go to bed with the hens and to wake up with the rooster” or in other words “early to bed, early to rise”.

It was nice seeing another side to Verona and with the good weather and longer nights ahead I hope to return to le colline (“the hills”) to visit my new found donkey friends. I hope you have all enjoyed On Location Italian for this week. A presto!

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