We have a lot to do before we can even consider going to Italy to meet with Count Lussuria’s lawyer. We need to uncover more of the history of this B&B we’ve inherited and we need to do it pretty fast. So Willow and I decided to sit down together to make a list.
Each item seems like years of work all by itself, but at least we are doing something. We came up with this daunting list–not in order of importance:
- Find our siblings. Mum hinted that there were at least ten of them but we don’t know who or where they are.
- Learn more about the history of our B&B. We only really know about the current “incarnation.” Maybe we can ask our older cafe customers what they remember. We’ve also inherited a parrot who is quite old and seems to know a few of our customers better than we do.
- Ask the historian at the local Historical Society and the librarians at the Santa Barista Genealogical Library for help. Old newspaper articles and court records could contain references to the boarding house, our mother, and might explain some of the names that seem to keep coming up. A good lead could send us in the right direction (or at least some direction).
- Learn Italian. We can call in a friend who grew up in Italy and ask her to give us a crash course in some basic words and phrases.
- Learn about the history of our own town during those earlier days. How did our widowed grandmother make it through the Great Depression? How did she serve food without wine during Prohibition to the many Italians who came to Santa Barista?
- Make a plan for running the B&B while we do all this background work. Perhaps we should hire additional staff.
So, starting with number 1, we composed a letter to Count Lussuria’s lawyer, Signore Borseggiatore. We asked him if he would/could give us names of any other people the Count had asked him to contact. We told him that it will be at least a few months before we can visit him in person.
We’ve planned a visit to the genealogy library to check town histories and early U.S. Census records to find out who lived at our address during the census years. Anyone who is still living might have information that would help us. Also some of our siblings might be listed.
Exhausted, but feeling we’d come up with a plan, we sat down for a glass of wine and talked about the evening’s dinner menu.