"Lasciate ogne speranza, voi ch'intrate"- DANTE
Renovating a house is trying in the best of circumstances. Renovating a house in the South of Italy is chaos, not even controlled chaos, just chaos. Tiles go missing. Parts of wall fall from the ceiling. Artisans come and go according to their own indecipherable schedules. Occasionally doors get left open and stray dogs wander into the house, albeit it with more regularity than the local craftsmen. All of this means that I have unwittingly become part project manager, part zookeeper. Or as my by old boss used to trill when I worked in the federal government, "It's like herding cats around here." More depressingly, when I tell friends I am renovating an old house on the Amalfi Coast, they often imagine Under the Tuscan Sun. My situation is more akin to another book that loosely takes place in Italy: Dante’s Inferno. I occasionally imagine dipping local craftsman into vats of cement, meting out my punishment Dante style.