The STORY goes like this……….
We both worked for a company that DISTRIBUTED the GUCCI ACCESSORY COLLECTION in the United States and Canada.Maria was the BOSS or il CAPO and she was a FORCE.She ran the GUCCI shop inside JOSEPH MAGNIN’s way back when.ALSO she was 100 percent ITALIAN.
(If you are from SAN FRANCISCO and read the PAPERS you will know who she is now.She became a BIG SOCIALITE.)
It was MARIA and her husband who FOUND my husband in the FACTORY in SCANDICCI outside of FLORENCE.YOU see The ITALIAN’s FATHER worked for the GUCCI FAMILY.He was the accounting manager of the factory.Want to know HOW he got his JOB?My husbands parents lived in the same building in ROME as the MISTRESS of Mister ALDO GUCCI…………..so there you have it!It’s ALL in WHO YOU KNOW!Or I should say it was an INTRODUCTION!
Because my husband had DUAL citizenship as his FATHER was an AMERICAN it would be easy to bring him over to the STATES to work in our BUYING OFFICES. Plus, he spoke ITALIAN!
SO, that is what happened in APRIL of 1984.
Maria and STEPHEN announced in a meeting that they were bringing over an ITALIAN to work in our offices.I being the SHY One and MEEK and MILD……… OH YES I WAS……………ASKED in front of the entire STAFF.
“HOW TALL IS HE and is HE GAY?”
HE ARRIVED IN APRIL……………I took one look at him and kept working at my desk.TOO SHORT.Plus, I swear to this day he had on a BLUE POLYESTER SUIT!He claims NO he didNOT!I think he tossed it after we HOOKED UP!
He was CUTE but I took ZERO notice of him as I was taller and in my mind that wouldn’t work!
His ENGLISH wasNOT SO good either………….seems his PAPA never spoke a word of it at HOME as the MOTHER did not speak ENGLISH.
MY deskmate got to go on a date with my future husband…………..she asked me if she should GO!I said, ‘YES, he knows NO ONE here and why NOT!”she says to me” Because he is ITALIAN…….YOU KNOW!”I laughed and said GO OUT WITH HIM!
You see even back then I was WORRIED about people and wanting to make their life a little bit better.
SEPTEMBER arrives……….but many times I was asked by him to do something THAT NIGHT after work.I was ALWAYS BUSY and I really was!Didnot make up lies NOT to go out with him I just was BUSY!To this day I cannot recall what I was doing but I would say the 7th time he asked me OUT(He never gave up!)I told him MY MOTHER was VISITING from SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA!
He said, Bring your MOTHER to dinner!”SO, I DID as I did not look at it as a date……..it was two people from the office getting together.
FIRST DATE WITH MY MOTHER AT HIS PLACE which was a basement apartment with zero chairs just TWO bean bags and a coffee table.I thought to myself, “OH GOD!”I will never hear the end of this from my MOTHER as she has a bad back!
Well, after appetizers…..Pasta……some Meat, Veggies and Salad and FRUIT for dessert we left there very HAPPY!I was not even out of the driveway when my Mother puts her hand on my knee and says, “What’s wrong with HIM?He is CUTE,CHARMING and HE CAN COOK………….ELIZABETH!!!!”I said, “MOM he is too SHORT!”She slams back at me “GIVE UP THE HIGH HEELS”.She said something else but as I write I cannot recall it NOW!Bottom line she was telling me HE was a CATCH………little did my MOTHER at the time know he can FIX ANYTHING and remodeled our house by HIMSELF.I think as time went on she learned he was capable of doing this and that and told me you will save a LOT of money if you marry this man as my FATHER couldn’t even put a nail in the wall to hang a picture!
MY MOTHER pointed me in the RIGHT DIRECTION!
LISTEN to YOUR MAMA she is a WISE WOMAN…………been there done that BOTTOM LINE!
ON SEPTEMEBER 8th, 1984 we had our FIRST REAL DATE.
We went to the MOVIES…….GREMLIN’S and then out for ICE CREAM on PIEDMONT AVENUE to FENTON’s.He paid for the MOVIES and I paid for ICE CREAM or did WE go DUTCH?Neither of us can recall now.As of last night the ITALIAN says, that wasNOT the FIRST DATE.I SAY it WAS…………..without my MOTHER!
From that moment on we were in separable………..
However, we kept it from the office…………until the CHRISTMAS party!The CAT was out of the BAG so to say on the DANCE FLOOR!
I should back up a moment and tell you all that after a week of dating him; HIS GIRLFRIEND from FLORENCE was ARRIVING!!!!
THAT put a little DAMPER on things.BUT NOT REALLY!
He found the MOST BAZAAR excuses to swing by my apartment!The BEST was the brown grocery bag.You see he used these as garbage bags.He being only one person did not buy many groceries so the bags ran low.HE WAS IN NEED OF GARBAGE BAGS did I have an excess………..
YES, I DID!
Never mind before SHE arrived I took him shopping for pillows and a stereo system!I even CO~SIGNED so he could get CREDIT.He had NO credit cards……..ITALY really did not use them at the time.In fact, when you bought a house there 30 years ago one paid CASH.That was how things were done.In 1991 the banks were installing the FIRST ATM’s.
You also paid your phone and electrical bill at the POST OFFICE………..in CASH.Every month!One NEVER mailed a BILL.
Grocery stores were CLOSED on WEDNESDAY AFTERNOONS!
One paid MORE If you sat at a CAFE rather then stand at the BAR for a coffee.I believe that still exists TODAY?Perhaps,an old CHUM can leave a comment and tell me if I have that correct.
We had no DRYER……..and the washing machine took an hour and a half!That was the fastest cycle…….BELIEVE YOU ME!
SO, I met HIM in APRIL of 1984 by September we were dating………….then the EX-girlfriend arrived and stayed for a month.Then Christmas arrived and the WHOLE OFFICE knew………our little secret.I cannot recall when we got ENGAGED,I think it was on SEPTEMBER 8th of 1985, but I asked HIM when we were getting married!His answer was how about next summer!The ring came and was slipped on my finger while I was still half asleep with a breakfast tray………….and because we had been looking for rings and I knew how expensive they were I accused him of buying me a Cubic Zirconium.MEANWHILE, you could hear the SHRILLS of delight FAKE or NOT a mile away!!
THAT IS THE STORY on how I MET THE ITALIAN!
I have MARIA MANETTI to THANK and MY MOTHER!
30 years later…………..WE ARE STILL A FORCE!
Can you see the light coming through that STAINED GLASS?
The glass was cut VERY VERY THIN.
That is the sun reflecting through to the Alter.This was the SET~UP for our MATRIMONY.
ME in my getting READY STATE………..we stayed at the VILLA CORA the night before and the night of the wedding.
This is what 124 pounds looks like on a 5 foot 11 inch GAL…………
These are my husbands sisters!
My Mother-in-law used their CONFIRMATION dresses with the PINK BOWS.
I apologize for the poor photo.
Those of you who know TINA she is on the LEFT!
Not ONE but TWO PRIESTS married US.
One traveled UP from ROME.
A family Friend.
He was the official LATIN TRANSLATOR for the VATICAN!
Greeting THE MAMMA’s after the VOWS!
My Mother in Blue.
His Mother in Black & Orange
Then I believe she changed for the RECEPTION!
SHE was WAY ahead of the TREND!
MY FAVORITE PHOTO!
Here you can peek at the GUCCI shoes that were MADE just for ME!
Flats with TWO rhinestone jewels.
I always thought my BOUQUET should have been BIGGER and MORE CASCADING!
Other then that it was ALL SO PERFECT!
THE GET AWAY CAR!
Down the hill to VILLA CORA we GO!
I wore my GRANDMOTHER’s PEARL earrings……….
AS my SOMETHING OLD!
Another poor photo for YOUR enjoyment!
Maybe this is where my LOVE of BUSTS came from!
Our RECEPTION was at the VILLA CORA just down the hill from SAN MINIATO al MONTE.
Then there was the HONEYMOON.
ALL arranged by the ITALIAN.
(I see a pattern here with our recent trip to COSTA RICA!)
WE sailed the sea and hit many PORTS of CALL
I believe this was PORTO VENERE.
DREAMING of the LIFE AHEAD of ME!
I still have that SCARF and those sandals I LOVED!
WE HAVE BEEN MARRIED FOR 30 YEARS on JULY 5th, 2016.
He has stood by me in SICKNESS and in HEALTH.
He has a HEART of GOLD.
YES, he can FIX and DO ANYTHING!
HE STILL COOKS from TIME to TIME!
That is the STORY on how I met and married THE ITALIAN.