Saturday, June 30, 2012

Welcome to Ingrid

We welcome Ingrid to Italy. Ingrid left Brussels and moved today to San Vito di Cadore*, at the heart of the Dolomites.

But, above all, we welcome Ingrid among our ‘official followers’.

Welcome Ingrid!

(*) For those who wonder where we will spend our next winter holiday weeks (please note the plural), above the answer!

Friday, June 29, 2012

A night in Deira

Last time I stopped over in Dubai, I opted to visit the part of town that expands along the Sheikh Zayed Rd: the ‘new’ Dubai - paradoxical, excessive… almost unreal. This time I decided to spend my overnight in Dubai on the other side of the Creek, in Deira, the ‘old’ city, the pulsing heart of Dubai.

Here waves of Syrian, Iraqi, Afghan, Filipino, Lebanese, and Pakistani immigrants have disorderly settled in in the past decades, and live now altogether in a Saudi melting-pot. Here the various souqs (the Gold Souq, the Spice Souq, the Perfume Souq, etc.) contrast the luxury shopping-malls on the other side of the Creek.

Described as dusty, crowded, and chaotic, travel guides consider it the ‘Karachi of the Saudi Peninsula’. Well, I have never been to Karachi (not yet), but I do start knowing that corner of the world well enough to feel comfortable in saying that Deira is still too clean, too tidy, too new to be compared to any city of the Indian sub-continent at all. However, the smell of spices and street food, the crowd in the streets, the queues outside the mosques, the small shops open late in the night, make this place pleasantly lively…

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Leo and his sharks

As in Clement Richter’s book, Ti-Koyo et son requin, Ti-Koyo - a young boy who lives in a Pacific island - developed a special friendship with a baby-shark found in a small inlet of his island, likewise Leo is developing his friendship with sharks in a bath-tub in San Felice.

Imagine if we were in Fiji!

(Ps: Test of your marine biology knowledge: can you recognize the sharks in the bath-tub?)

Wednesday, June 27, 2012


... and three! Happy anniversary to us!

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

The 'iPad' generation

At my times, these pipes* were grey, made of cement, rough. Now they are coloured, made of anti-cancerous material, ergonomic, and child friendly...

The new 'iPad' generation!

(*) Al parco giochi della VII.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Leonardino va in treno

Leonardino è un leoncino che vive a Nairobi, la capitale del Kenya. Questo week-end Leonardino doveva andare a trovare la nonna che vive a Mombasa, una città sulla costa a circa 350 miglia da Nairobi.

Ci sono quattro modi diversi per andare da Nairobi a Mombasa: in aereo, ma costava troppo. In macchina, ma il papà aveva venduto il suo Mitsubishi Pajero rosso tanti anni fa. A piedi, ma ci vogliono delle zampette belle forti, e Leonardino barcolla ancora un po’. Oppure in treno. Ma Leonardino non era mai stato in treno…

"Nessun problema" disse il papà di Leonardino. "Ti accompagnerò io, così imparerai, e la prossima volta, quando sarai un leoncino un po' più grande, potrai andare da solo".

Così, dopo una ricca colazione a base di latte di giraffa (Leonardino ha avuto qualche problema di digestione ultimamente, e il dottore ha consigliato di evitare il latte di zebra per il momento), Leonardino e il suo papà si diressero verso la stazione...

Com’è andata?

Chiedetelo a Leonardino (o ai suoi vicini…)

Saturday, June 23, 2012


While Mathilde went to Marseille to celebrate Delphine’s bachelorette party (see picture below from our files), Matteo & Leo went to Ivrea to celebrate the Capobelsky’s renowned ‘Festa di Ivrea’ (photo credit: Capobelsky 2011).

Pictures and stories, of both the events, soon.

And tomorrow, back on the road - destination Kabul.

See you in a week.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

I piediniiiii!!!!*

(*) The small feet; Les petons!!!!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Lahore. Dinner with some Pakistani Government officials, businessmen, journalists...

Lahore. Dinner with some Pakistani Government officials, businessmen, journalists...

- Where do you come from?

- Italy
- Italy? Oh, we love Italy! Italy is the Pakistan of Europe!

Monday, June 18, 2012

La Madrina (The Godmother)

Leo will be baptized at the end of the month.

According to the tradition, Leo’ spiritual growth would need to be supported by two reference figures: a godfather and a godmother. And according to the tradition, each branch of the family should provide one of these figures.

Having already a Saint in their family, the choice for the Iweins has been relatively easy, and fell on (Saint) Jean-Marc.

But for the Marchisios the choice has been much harder, as no one in the family really fulfilled the minimum requirements for the appointment.

The choice fell on Chiara eventually, selected for her uprightness and unquestioned moral qualities.

Or not?...

Sunday, June 17, 2012


We abundantly extolled Leo’ swimming talent in the past posts - and this is certainly from the Marchisio’ side of the family.

But we didn’t celebrate Leo’s horse-riding skills enough - and this certainly comes from the Iweins’ branch of the family.

Looking forward to horse-riding with the cousinettes soon! J

Friday, June 15, 2012

The last (American) supper

We recognize there have been few pictures of Mathilde on the Blog lately. We remedy immediately by posting these pictures from our files: Mathilde’s last supper in the US.

La carbonara non si discute (you cannot question the carbonara), but - we confess it - sometime we miss a fat, greasy, junky (but succulent) American burger…

And some hyper-caloric donuts as well!

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

As a commuter

As a consummate commuter, I run to catch my usual flight, the 12.10 pm FCO-ISB via DOH.

See you in a week. I’ll try to take advantage of the next few nights without Leo to update the Blog.

Keep an eye on it!

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Sunday, June 10, 2012


After only two classes*, Leo already received his first swimming certificate: squaletto (little shark).

Blood will tell out (buon sangue non mente; bon sang ne saurait mentir…).

(*) Ref:

L’amico ritrovato (Reunion)

Catherine used to be my room-mate at the World Bank. We shared the office, but not only. Confidences, frustrations, aspirations… she was my office-mate, but she was a good friend as well.

And then, as often happens in our profession, someone leaves - in this case Catherine, destination: Nairobi. A few emails to keep in touch, but, with time, fewer and fewer, each of us taken up by our respective routines. I had heard she had moved to London after Nairobi, and then to Azerbaijan, but meanwhile I had moved to Delhi, and by that time we had completely lost track of each other.

Until yesterday, when I unexpectedly received a message from her. She is in Brussels now, got married, and got a beautiful daughter, Helena Chiara, more or less as old as Leo.

An Uhlman’s happy ending - which may become a Hollywood happy ending if we meet again eventually.

Who knows? Do keep on follow our Blog, and you will discover the end of this story...

Thursday, June 7, 2012


With a few days of delay (apologizes, it has been a quite hectic period) we celebrate Leo’s first ten (decina, dizaine).

Happy tenth monthlyversary, Leo!

(Ps: this is Mathilde Leo’s favourite picture. I had been accused of deliberately not publishing it. I was just waiting for the right occasion...)

Monday, June 4, 2012

How I found Leo today when I came back from office...

… standing on the bed on his feet.

We witnessed this event with enthusiasm and - can’t deny - with a bit of apprehension as well.

They say in fact there is - in every child - a turning point, an invisible line on this side of which you have to pay attention they don’t get hurt, and beyond which you have to pay attention they don’t get up to all kinds of mischief.

I am afraid we are getting closer to (if we have not already passed) that line...