love thursday: the couple that gets water together

P’s parents have been married for nearly 50 years and have 7 children; P is the youngest. I haven’t asked how they got together, but judging from the time period, it’s possible that it was somewhat arranged, that is, at least encouraged by their respective families.

Maybe because this is a Love Thursday post, you’re waiting for a “and they’re still in love after all these years” revelation. Truth be told, I imagine they are at least in some way, but they certainly aren’t lovey dovey. In fact, they are an awfully stoic couple, not touchy feely at all–I know, you’re wondering if they’re really Italian, but this is actually quite common in the older generations down here from what I’ve seen.

They came of age during World War II, when there was never enough of anything to go around. But they made do, and they still make do. They never had a lot of material stuff, extra time to offer up for each and every child, time to just relax and have fun–they were busy working and providing the basics, which included raising nearly all of their food from start to finish.

Sometimes it’s easy for those of us who didn’t grow up in this culture to judge a particular style of parenting and/or living from the outside looking in. But when I look deeper and try to understand the “whys” along with the behavior, I see that P’s parents are, indeed, extremely loving people. Instead of giving “things,” hugs, and kisses, they are of the school that says you show your love by doing nice things for others, things that make their lives easier.

And they most certainly do a lot for us. A list would be tedious, but I did happen to catch a photo of them doing something for P and me the other day.

Getting water from a mountain spring (try to imgaine there’s no graffiti).

Not too long ago, this spring was closed because of a lack of water (no rain!), but since it’s reopened, P’s mom in particular is ecstatic. Although there’s a truck that comes around with mountain water for about 10 cents a container (you bring the empties, and the driver refills while you wait), P’s mom likes the taste of this spring water better.

I can’t say that I taste a difference, but in any event, we are never thirsty, and we are grateful.

Happy Love Thursday everyone!


[tags]mountain water, love thursday, couples[/tags]

15 Beans of Wisdom to “love thursday: the couple that gets water together”
  1. nyc/caribbean ragazza

    That is a really sweet post. You are right, people can express/show their love in all different ways.

  2. Waspgoddess

    I love his pink fork!

    I agree with you that love can indeed be expressed in so many different ways. Sometimes the less overt ways are more heart warming.

    I hope you’re having a wonderful Thursday.

  3. Judith in Umbria

    Loving is 100% more important than being in love. I wish our media didn’t propound that “in love” is common, because it is pretty damned rare after some years. At the first low point, a lot of people start to bail out.
    I’ve much more respect for a marriage in which those involved are caring, unwilling to hurt the other and supportive.
    To me it is empty people who are always vulnerable to getting attracted away by someone or something else.

  4. Cynthia Rae

    Wow 50 years and 7 kids! Congrats to them both!

    I wish I had had the chance to get to know my in.laws better. How lucky for you to have them both still alive and well.

    best wishes,

  5. Michellanea

    Carini! This is very true. Cristiano’s parents are very sweet people, but they don’t go around saying ‘I love you’ all the time or giving us Hallmark cards. They show their love by always putting their son (and me, as his wife) FIRST before anything. I struggle with accepting their kindness – as I’ve talked about a lot on my blog – but I do believe it’s more genuine than many relationships I have in the U.S.

  6. Mom2One

    Very sweet.

    Happy Love Thursday!

  7. Ivan Zverzhanovski

    I wonder whether this is not the Italian/Mediteranean/Southern European way. That generation of Italian parents seem to put their kids before anything and make immense sacrifices for them. You can’t really generalise, but it is much more common than say in the UK.

  8. Delina

    Che bella coppia!

  9. meredith

    My mil is italian, from near Treviso, and she looks and shows love much in the same way as yours. I have to be careful not to mention that I like something, or she’ll give it to me, but she is definitely not a hugger.
    Happy Love Thursday

  10. Marmite Breath

    Essato! Being in love, while wonderful, doesn’t last, but marriage MUST last. It’s mawwiage, after all. There have definitely been periods in the last ten years that I have not been in love with my husband, but every morning when I get a cup of coffee in bed (or coffee is made when he leaves before I have to wake up) it is a sign that he loves me and cares about me.

  11. PastorMac's Ann

    Wonderful! Sometimes love is definitely in the “doing.” How sweet that you have them in your life. Happy LT.

  12. Carole (Sicilian nativa)

    I just love reading your blog. It’s one of my favorite ones and especially since you write about life in Southern Italy I can relate to that.

    I’m from Sicily and my family is like that, always doing for others, especially for their kids, no matter how old they are. What they can’t put into words, they show by action.

    Bellissimo giovedi’.

  13. bella

    Sweet story. My in-laws are much the same as P’s parents. Old school Europeans who don’t show much affection towards each other. They do anything and everything in their power to help Zak and I – and they watch my daughter Angie like she’s a fragile piece of glass.
    There’s something good within those oldies.

  14. Shan

    Oh my gosh, how cute are they?

    Isn’t it a beautiful gift to have such amazing in-laws? Mike and I both count our blessings with that one!

  15. sognatrice

    Thanks to all for sharing your observations ๐Ÿ™‚

    Waspgoddess, that photo was taken at P’s niece’s birthday party, thus all the pink!

    Judith, I completely agree. Loving something, I believe, is a choice, and like all choices, have easy and hard times. Mutual respect, support, and unwillingness to hurt the other person–that’s true love. And a cup of coffee every morning, like Marmite Breath wrote ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Michelle, it is difficult to be spoiled, isn’t it? I have trouble accepting their help too, especially when I don’t feel like I could ever adequately return the favor. Maybe we should be asking ourselves why it’s so hard for us to accept kindness?

    Ivan, doesn’t seem like you’d be generalizing based from some of the other commenters experiences too ๐Ÿ™‚ Thanks for stopping by!

    Carole, how wonderful to hear from you! I’m glad you’re enjoying my rendering of a southern Italian life ๐Ÿ™‚

    And yes, as many of you said, I am very lucky to have such great (and cute!) in-laws…of course this morning my MIL woke me up calling to see if we needed anything at the store, but…we have water ๐Ÿ™‚

Michelle KaminskyMichelle Kaminsky is an American attorney-turned-freelance writer who lived in her family's ancestral village in Calabria, Italy for 15 years. This blog is now archived. 

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