I hope everyone had a lovely Easter.  Here in Lanciano, Easter is a pretty big deal with parades and marching bands going around the town nearly everyday since last Thursday. Chris captured some amazing shots of the Easter parade this past Thursday.

We’ve been relaxing in Lanciano with my good friend Cristina (who I call “Cris)  and her family. I met Cris when she was 13-years old and I was 16-years old. We hit it off from the very beginning. Some of you might recognize her because she was one of my bridesmaids.  Her family runs the high school here, called Canadian College of Italy the Renaissance School, where I attended grade 10, 11 and half of 12.

Here are a couple photos of this beautiful Italian town and the people I love.

Chris walking through the main piazza of Lanciano featuring the bell tower and the Basilica.

The bell tower rings every 15-minutes. First it rings one tone of bell for what hour it is, then another tone lets you know if it is 15-after, 30-minutes or 45-minutes after the hour. To say the least, if you visit Lanciano be prepared to hear a lot of bells.

Since arriving it has become a daily ritual for Chris and I to wake-up and head directly for the market or “mercato” in Italian, to satisfy our craving for caffeine. A double espresso or cappuccino usually does the trick.

Carla and Chris enjoying a cappuccino at the market.

We’ve also been helping out with odd tasks around the school and market. One of the first things we did was help Carla, Cris’s sister, decorate the market for Easter.

Carla and Chris hard at work trying to figure out how to make the purple and green paper hang "just-so".

We even worked out our muscles and helped unload a van full of fresh produce the night before the weekly Wednesday market. I had no idea a crate of zucchini’s could be so heavy.

Laura and Chris help unload fresh produce at the market as their new friend, Mrika, chuckles at their technique.

Of course after a workout like that we were all craving a well deserved drink so we headed back to the Allegria, the restaurant/hotel where the students eat lunch and dinner, which at one point also contained a wine bar for the public.

From left to right: Eligio (staff member of the market & restaurant), Cris (my lovely girlfriend), Mrika (staff member of the market & restaurant), Davide (my girl friends brother) and me!

Cris and I enjoying our first beer together, EVER! She has only recently discovered the beauty of beer. I have a feeling we'll be drinking a few more together.

Filled with excitement and energy after a good nights rest, I wanted to show Chris the school.

Chris spots my Grade 12 school photo hanging on the wall in the school.

After exploring the school for a bit, we met up with Cris, her boyfriend Dave and her sister Carla. Of course I had to get a shot of them in front of the school.

Dave, Carla, Cris and Chris standing outside CCI The Renaissance School the Canadian high school in Lanciano, Italy.

Cris and Chris, essentially THE two Chris's in my life, walk past some students on their way to lunch.

One evening Cris took us on a tour of the central town. Her tour focused primarily on churches and architecture with its most exciting and well known topic being the Eucharistic Miracle of Lanciano. Seeing as the miracle is in a church I didn’t feel comfortable taking a photo, but the link provides excellent information on both Lanciano and the miracle. However, on the tour we did see some wonderful examples of modern day life and old architecture.

People having a smoke break outside of the town teatro (theatre).

This large space rests directly under the basilica. Other hallways and corridors are found underground which were used as protective passageways for priests and as a cistern hundreds of years ago.

Lastly, I snapped a couple of photos while we were in Rome. Chris was doing a lot of street photography while we were there so I shot a few as well and a couple of the church that displays a Michaelangelo sculpture.

A little boy in Rome marvels at the Egyptian looking mime.

An intense walk.

San Pietro in Vincoli in Rome, Italy. The church that contains one of Michaelangelo's masterpieces.

A quiet corridor of San Pietro in Vincoli, a church in Roma, Italy.