I Am the Eggman, Coo-Coo-Ca-Choo

December 11, 2012

This story takes place in Licodia Eubea, a foggy place high on a hill in Southeast Sicily, one of those time-frozen towns with a generous rhythm of life.

A big white van was inching its way through the slick streets when a man in a navy coppola flagged it down.

Out popped the driver. He tossed open the back doors to reveal a whole supermarket inside: oodles of noodles and bread and cookies and chips and cheese and sausage.

Sicilian Supermarket on Wheels in Licodia Eubea, copyright Jann Huizenga

The man in the coppola fingered some brown eggs to make sure they were good and fresh, then fished a few euro from a pocket.

Sicilian Man with Eggs, copyright Jann Huizenga

“Excuse me, signore. That’s a lot of eggs. What’ll you do with them all, if I may ask?”

(You can be a nosy snoop in Sicily.)

Sicilian Man with Eggs, copyright Jann Huizenga

“My wife sent me out to get them. She likes to make cakes.”

Sicilian Man with Eggs, copyright Jann Huizenga

Then the man was off, shuffling carefully over wet cobbles, holding the fragile treasures like his life depended on it.

I wondered: Will the eggs make it safely?  Will he get a peck on the cheek for running the errand? What kind of cake will she concoct? Orange? Lemon-thyme? Walnut? Ricotta cream?

Such are the daily dramas of life in small-town Sicily.


Sleepy Licodia Eubea comes alive during the September grape festival!!!


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