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Monica Bielanko
A chronicle since 2005 of my marriage & move to Brooklyn in my twenties; becoming a mother in my thirties; moving to Pennsylvania and learning to amicably coparent after divorce in my forties while living 3 doors down from my ex-husband in a small country town.
That's What She Said
You can also find Monica's writing here:
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Monday
May012006

Arrivederci

No reservations. No schedules. No expectations. Just Italy, us and a credit card. Milan. Maybe Lake Como? Venice has been discussed. Florence too. Perhaps Pisa? Rome? Truthfully I don't much care where, just who.

I want to hold my husband's hand, feel the length of him next to me... his palm imperceptibly guiding me by pressing gently into the small of my back as we stroll thousand year old streets and see the sights, whatever they may be...

Reader Comments (35)

have fun! i love italy!
May 1, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterCharlotte
Have fun!! We will miss you!!! :)
May 1, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterJen
ciao Monica! fare buon viaggio!
May 1, 2006 | Unregistered Commenterchrissy
....or something like that
May 1, 2006 | Unregistered Commenterchrissy
Hit the Lake District, baby. So beautiful. Have a wonderful time.
May 1, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterSusanna
Florence: Eat as much as possible, see as many Caravaggios as possible, make out on the grass in the Boboli gardens as much as possible.

Venice: Get to some of the outer islands. Pick olives and pears of trees and take vaporetti all over the place. Consciously attempt to get lost in Venice, it's actually very fun.

As Goethe said, "See Naples and die."

That's all I got.
May 1, 2006 | Unregistered Commenterereiberg
Can't wait to hear all about it and see the pictures!!

Have a FABULOUS time! And make sure he gets some chubby hubby to offset all the gelato! ;)
May 1, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterAME
I'm dying of jealousy. Have fun!
May 1, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterEmily
monique, send mama a postcard or some little diddy from somewhere over there, please? I'll never have anything from far away so please oh please...a postcard from all the fun places. (you know how I jones' for postcards.. remember?) It'll be soooo fun and I'll be a waitin. Be careful and live it up!!!
May 2, 2006 | Unregistered Commentermama
Hand me over a hankie ...

May 2, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterBill
travel safely.
May 3, 2006 | Unregistered Commenterkasey
I've been to Italy four times and no matter where you go, you're going to love all of it. It's my favorite place in the world. Divertiti!!!
May 3, 2006 | Unregistered Commenterbettyonthebeach
Oh, you are so lucky. Just started reading your blog and love it! Felt it was also necessary to tell you how ADORABLE Max is. I mean, really. He is the sweetest looking lab I've seen in a while. Want one of my own black boys :(
May 3, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterHeather
Hello Monica! I hope you're having a good time in Italy!!!
Ciao Amica!!!
May 3, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterGiorgio
Buona fortuna!

1. Go to one of the churches decorated with bones in Rome (google it, I don't remember where it was),

2. Don't wear a tank top to Saint Peter's (trust me, those swiss guards are biotches)

3. eat in the tiny restaurants as much as you can(order casa vino - seriously! Best I've ever had)

4. Eat pizza at least twice a day ;)

5. Drink limoncello 'til you hurl

Have fun! Good luck. :)
May 3, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterGallivan
Does it make me a small person to say that I'm more bummed that I'm not away than happy that you're having a great time?
May 3, 2006 | Unregistered Commentersandra
Ciao from Pavia! Hung over from Marah madness.

Type at ya soon.
May 4, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterMonica
Hi Monica, i hope you have enjoyed the "marah party", and most of all i hope you and Serge will enjoy your staying in Italy, wherever you'll be!!!
and remember..limomcello is not a shot drink!!!
Ciao

Enrico
May 4, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterEnrico
It's a shot drink if you have a stomach of titanium steel!

For the rest of us.......drink in moderation

o.O
May 4, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterGallivan
Just love, love, love your blog. I've lost a week of work while discovering it.

Happy times to you and Serge in Italy. I have no idea what Marah is about, but I'm getting a CD. What's a good start for a Marah virgin?

May 4, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterKDS
Marah Virgin!!

Start with their latest disc...'If You Didn't Laugh You'd Cry'. It is fantastic, each song is great and different from the last, very diverse. From there pick another album - any album - and you will be happy. 'Kids In Philly' and 'Lets Cut the Crap and Hook Up Later on Tonight' are my other two faves.

Welcome KDS!
May 5, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterRichelle
Oh man, I had a bottle of Limoncello in my fridge for a while. Definitely not a shot drink!
May 5, 2006 | Unregistered Commenterdu_dragons
Thanks for the welcome and the recommendation, Richelle.

I am happily awaiting my Marah cds!
May 5, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterKDS
When I found this web I was a novice. I didn't know that such a place existed. I was, at the ripe old age of 61 shy. Me?? Shy?? Well let me tell you. I have found an outlet like you have never seen before.

I want to tell you about the night Serge Sr. and I got together. Some of you may be interested most of you may not, but Imagonna do it anyway.

I got out of work at Golden Chrysler Plymouth, Ridge Avenue, blah blah blah, PA. It was about 10:00 PM and I headed for my favorite spot the Village blah, blah, blah on Ridge Ave.

When I got there, I met up with my sales manager, some of the sales staff, some office staff and the topic of conversation was the upcoming Army/Navy game in a couple of weeks. I stated that I would give my right tit and half of my left arm to be at that game due to the fact that my Dad served in the Navy and went into Normandy. For one reason or another, I just wanted to be on the Navy side. I didn't really give a shit who won the game, I just wanted to be there to support Navy. But what to my wondering should appear but a guy who had 2 extra tickets for that specific game. He did not have them on him of course, but if I met him about an hour or so at a bar up the street called Tolands he would be there and I could have the tickets. I asked what the strings were and he assured me there were none. I of course was very unsure.

Long and short of it, I went to Tolands. I had never been to this bar before. I parked my company car. Walked up to the mahogany doors with all the little pieces of glass, walked into the buffer zone and pushed my way through another set of mahogany doors and there I was at a 30 foot oval bar. No, No, it was not oval, it had corners. What is that?? Anyway I knew it was 30 feet, even though I am so bad at this because I could lay on the bar end to end at least 6 times. I am 5'2".

I immediately spot three empty seats on the opposite side of the bar from the entry and strut my shit over to the seats. I order my usual at the time Vodka and Fresca!! After the gallon was delivered I thought, what the fuck have I been missing all this time. $6.00 for a gallon drink.

Across the bar from me is this guy that reminds me of my soap opera star on Young and the Restless. He looks like Victor Newman. There is an empty stool next to him on his right. I have 2 empty stools next to me on my right. God must have been with me that night because the tickets never arrived, but three guys walked in looking for seats at the bar together. I said over here, over here, over here, take my seats.............

I immediately moved next to my buddy Victor Newman. He by this time didn't even know there was an empty seat next to him.

So I nudged him. And immediately apologized. He was really starting to loose it. That was OK though, he was not nasty. The three guys that I gave up my seat for immediately went into a fury as to who was gonna buy me my first drink. I got one from all three. Victor Newman was now leaning on my shoulder.

I said hey buddy, do you need a ride home?? He said yes I do.

I said where do you live. He said Conshohocken. I said where the fuck is that. He said follow me. I said no way. You leave your vehicle here and I will take you home. He said I have a bed. I said I hope you enjoy it. He said no I don't mean that where do you live, I said Norristown. No way, you have been drinking too, however you are in better shape than I am. Can I get a lift. I said sure, no problem. But, I am telling you right now, no fucking around. He said no problem.

We get to his house. It was like he was with the Secret Service or something. He was checking bushes, checking cars on the street, he was checking the garage, the back yard. I finally said yo!! are you looking for the front door. It is right here. Give my your keys........

We get inside, go directly upstairs. He gets undressed and hops into bed. I get down to my underware. We go to sleep almost immediately. You know what that is like... drink.. go home.... sleep.

About 4:00 AM he starts to spoon. I feel a little uncomfortable.... He then starts to feel me up... I really at this time do not know who he is thinking about...the wife that just left or me!! I jump out of the bed, snap on the light and yell at the top of my lungs, which are quite large... No Motherfucker I told you no sex... He says you are crazy... but you are right.. Good night.

6:00 AM we are making the most beautiful love I have ever had. We have been together ever since.





May 6, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterMerrySerge
I love a good hilarious love story...nothing like yelling at a man to keep him for life! That's how I ending up marrying mine! Keep the stories coming MerrySerge.
May 6, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterRichelle
That was brilliant MerrySerge. You must be such a hard-case! Have never heard anybody over 60 using such language. Good for you!!
May 6, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterNiedlchen
We're having the best weather over here in Germany. Hope it's the same in bella Italia. Have fun!
May 7, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterMechthild
I suggest the "Cinque Terre" area...think you'd really love it. Have fun.
May 8, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterElina
First off, I hope you are literally having the time of your life over there with the LOVE of your life. I stumbled upon your site...and am hooked. A real live love story! This is so fun and amazing. I keep reading about the "ex" a girl named Catherine. Now I am curious who she is. Does she have a site? Just wondering because when you read a book you are curious about all the characters in it....although I know this is real. Love your enthusiasm for life Monica...you inspire me!
May 9, 2006 | Unregistered Commentercassie
cassie, weird...Of all the stories and writings on this site and you are curious about the ex? and ask if she has a site? What? Who gives a shit!!! She is a miniscule nothing compared to everything else we find on this site! Monicas's writing is amazing, how bout that? Is this...uh cassie??? yeah right.
May 10, 2006 | Unregistered Commenterjoyce
This is the main reason right here that I don't post comments. Someone always gets their feathers ruffeled and blows things way out of proportion. It was just a QUESTION. If Monica can't handle questions then she should't have a very public internet site with every detail on it. Gosh Joyce, loosen up. Also I won't be coming back to this site ever freakin again. I was excited to find Monica and I was going to buy some Marah CD's and try to go to the concert here in Charlotte with my husband. Now you couldn't pay me to! I prefer sites that don't bless people out for something so insignifigant.
May 10, 2006 | Unregistered Commentercassie
HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA
May 10, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterDrunken Lurker
Cassie...too bad....you will miss a great live show if you don't go see Marah! Do your self a favour and go to their show - you will be happy that you did.
May 10, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterRichelle
what does someone on a site writing their opinion(joyce) have to do with refusing to go to a Marah show (cassie). That is even more weird to me. Like you said anyone can write what they want here, so why do you hold it against Marah or Monica?? That even sounds more suspicious as to who you are. Joyce has nothing to do with Marah, Monica, Or this site. Sounds to me like you are trying to "get someone's site" publicized, so they will "come on over" Just another opinion here so don't freak out. SO GO TO THE SHOW, if your really in Charlotte. Get your own opinion.
May 11, 2006 | Unregistered Commenteranother lurker
well said and true enough. Cassies pouting and saying she won't be back is because her "little ploy" didn't work. HAHAHAHAHAHAHA. So easy to see. Yeah Cassie, "fly over" and see Marah. Like they said, what do I have to do with Marah or Monica?
May 11, 2006 | Unregistered Commenterjoyce

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