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  • Where in the World is Peppy Mitidiero?
    Part 1 of 3: Dad's Trip Home

    by Flora Mitidiero Raehl

    My mom died almost 13 years ago and I've been taking care of my father ever since. Or I should say, trying to take care of him. You see, my dad was born in Italy and is very old fashioned and stubborn. I am an American born only child, and we don't think anything alike. Anyone who is familiar with the old-fashioned male Italian psyche will understand what I as a daughter have gone through in the last 13 years. If I said yes, he'd say no, if I said left, he'd say right … you get my point. I'm never sure if we disagree on everything because we are so different, or if dad simply is contrary because he, as the patriarch of our little two person family, can be, or thinks he should be. In 13 years we haven't agreed on much and it's been a challenge, but never a dull moment as you'll soon understand.

    Several years after mom died dad decided it was time for a trip "home." No matter how long my father has lived in the United States he always has and always will consider Italy home. Dad was born in a very small mountain village in the toe of the boot that takes a good twenty-four hours of travel to get to, and he was going to be travelling alone. This was going to be a challenge for all involved. Dad is very hard of hearing, and like I mentioned before, very stubborn and refused to wear a hearing aid, so any kind of communication was nothing less than impossible, if not entertaining as well. Generally, he hears only a fraction of what's being said and then just tries to make up the rest to fill in the blanks. Suffice it to say, conversations are like bouncing a ball in a rubber room – you never know where the conversation is going. So he, traveling across the world for twenty-four hours all alone, scared the hell out of me. Who knows what could go wrong if he was left on his own. What took place from the time I made the reservations till the time he actually left was nothing short of a multitude of finely choreographed details – I covered every possible scenario, nothing could go wrong. I couldn't have been more wrong. So here's how it went…

    Part 2: Dad's MIA

    Article Published 5/5/11


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