Our stay in Calitri was much too brief, but we knew we would be back again. I had gone to see the place where my grandparents were born and really should have planned on staying longer, but not knowing much about the area (and not having a car), we had only planned an overnight. Unfortunately “il commune” (town office) was closed that week, but I was incredibly happy and very moved, to walk the streets that my mother’s parents had walked. I wish that my mom had been with us. She thought we were crazy to make the trip there (she has been to Italy many times, but always on a tour to see the “big sights”). She seems to marvel at the fact that we plan our own trips and just go where we want to go!
We were really hungry and had only a limited amount of time to find a restaurant and have lunch. There are only so many buses that leave Calitri and we knew we had to be on the 2:00 bus to Avellino so we could make our connection to Salerno. We searched and searched for somewhere to have lunch, but couldn’t find anything that was open. Finally I mustered up enough courage (this was before I had studied Italian) to go into one of the few hotels in town and ask about somewhere to have lunch. I understood enough to know that there was one place that wasn’t too far from where we were. It was called “Osteria Tre Rose” and I thought that this was a good sign, since my mother’s name is Rose.
Tucked away down a driveway, below some apartments, we found the restaurant. Of course we were the only “stranieri” (foreigners) there and were cheerfully welcomed to dine along side the workers who were there eating an watching some show on the TV. I was in need of something besides a pasta dish and they made me a wonderful salad that I had along with a an antipasto platter. Our lunch was delicious and just what we needed and so we were off to the bus stop. I had a tear in my eye as we boarded the bus, but I knew that this was just our first visit to Calitri and next time we would find my relatives. Could this be our next trip?