ROMAN ENCAMPMENT

Novara did not always exist.

Way back in Antiquity well before the birth of Christ, Rome was interested in developing a commercial trade center in northern Italy. The present site of Novara was selected. Nothing but raw wild land at the time.

Romans legions were sent forth.

Roman custom was to erect a stone wall around where ever they were encamped or in the process of doing something. The wall was for protective purposes. To prevent an enemy from getting into the Roman camp.
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Such a wall was erected in what is now the Novara area. Today, it is the historical center of Novara. The area within which I am staying and take my walks.

The walls were thick. The outer one 3-4 feet. Of varying heights. Sometimes there was a second wall. Thinner. The walls were constructed of stone and brick, held together with some sort of concrete.

Rooms were also constructed underground beneath the walls. Passageways lead one to another.

Portions of the wall remain to this day. A thousand feet from where I am staying there are the ruins and remnants of one of the walls.

The Roman encampment was in a new area. The Roman new was nov and the name Novara was born. The ara at the end stands for area. New area became Novara.

Walked big time yesterday morning. About an hour. All about the historical center of town. The boxing ring still standing. May be a permanent thing. There were several young men and trainers in the ring. Definitely amateurs. I watched a while. They were being taught well.

What I thought might be a yoga workout platform in another spot turned out to be just that. Young children were participating in a yoga class as I walked by. There was also a small sign in Italian. I recognized the word yoga. It is the same in Italian and English.

The computer wi-fi saga continues. My disappointment with Verizon continues also.

I discovered yesterday morning that I had left the battery to the computer at the communications store. Back I went. My man from the day before was not there. Another stood in his place.

We initially had trouble communicating. Neither could speak the other’s language. Suddenly his eyes brightened, he threw his arms up and said in a loud voice…..Americano! The battery had been placed in an office for safekeeping. He returned it to me.

An English speaking employee came over to assist. My new man was able to show me how to place wi-fi in my computer and tablet. He could not do it himself for business reasons.

I returned to the apartment and followed the instructions. The tablet took and worked fine. My computer would not. I do not understand why. If one works, the other should also.

There is a neighborhood computer store nearby. Took the computer there. Some one thing is miss set in my computer. He did not want to screw with it. Nor did I did not want him to. Too many special programs loaded into it which I feared might be lost.

Here is what we are down to. The tablet will work fine for the blog and e mails. It will not work for the blog talk radio show. I need the laptop for sufficient power to broadcast.

This friend’s computer I am working on is strange as to its Skype st up. I could not get into to do the blog radio show last night. Ergo, no show. Hopefully next week.

I was disappointed I could not do the show. Just chatting with some Italian people has been an eye opener. I have interesting things to share.

Dinner last night was at what I would describe as a small neighborhood Italian restaurant. The place was unusually clean. Bright white tablecloths and napkins. I ended up drinking Italian beer. I am not a beer drinker. They had no gin. The beer was excellent. No after taste.

I started with antipasto. All meat. No vegetables or cheese. Salami, pepperoni (which they call sausage), prosciutto, and bacon. The bacon was very thinly sliced. I do not believe cooked at all. Covered with a bit of oil.

To die for! Delicious!

A good thing I did not order pasta for a main course. Could never have handled it. I had some light local fish sliced very thin. Apparently quick broiled in lemon juice and served. Outstanding!

I learn. Tipping is built into the bill. You do not have to tip in most European nations. In Italy, the tip is labeled on the bill as coperto. Being American, I like to add a few extra euros. I feel like I am cheating the waiter by not leaving something in addition on the plate.The bill came. Forty euros. I automatically pulled out a ten euro bill. A generous American tip!

My friends were immediately upon me! Turned out 10 of the 40 euros on the bill was for coperto. The house had already added on a 33.3 per cent tip. Outrageous! I became Italian. I left nothing!

This morning I take the train to Milan. A one half hour ride. I look forward to the train ride. Folklore has it Mussolini made the trains run on time. I am anxious to see if it is true.

I am even more excited for the reason I am going to Milan. To see Da Vinci’s Last Supper! What could be more thrilling!

Enjoy your day!

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