Before I go to sleep tonight I wanted to share one more travel story.
Early in our trip Mary was having trouble finding food to eat. Celiac and dairy issues were eliminating much of the menus at restaurants. She was basically eating salad twice a day. We found a place that had grilled meat on the menu. We were so excited we ordered 2. It came with a first course of antipasti, meats and cheeses. Then they brought out platters of meat. There were sausages, a skewer of meat a pork steak, a veal steak, and ribs. A platter for each of us. We did our best but we barely made a dent. Our waiter Luigi was concerned that we left so much food. We told him everything was great just too much food. He was pleased when we told him that we would be back but split the platter.
We did come back. Twice and did just that but because we also ordered ensalta mista too, (mixed salad-awesome) we never did clean the plate. The staff would fuss and ask if everything was okay. We would always say it was fine but I think that their feelings were hurt.
On our last night there we came for dinner but we switched it up, I ordered a pizza- fantastic – and Mary had a large salad (we heard Luigi say to his staff in Italian, 2 salads, one plate) and potatoes. It was fun to see the relief on Luigi’s face after telling him what we wanted. He looked happy that we weren’t going to be leaving with 1/2 full plates.
That’s the story. It just gives the feel of how the Italians we met welcomed us, and were concerned for us. How they are so relational.
Thank you to those who supported us and those who enjoyed our travel journal of pics and gave us such positive feedback.
Epilogue: I am always impressed by a person with the gift of hospitality. It moves me. I notice the gift because it’s something I lack. Hospitality is sharing, “what’s mine is yours”. It is the ability to know how to make people feel welcomed and cared for. I am reserved. I hold back. I keep things in reserve, my head, my heart, my stuff. A person with the gift of hospitality is open and generous and cares for the needs of others.
I want generosity and warmth and welcome to be what I am known for. there is no reason to be stingy or miserly.
38 Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.”
Luke 6:38 – NIV
Maybe I need to go back to Italy and learn from the masters of hospitality.