Domenico Scognamillo was 78 - one of the 'oldies'
of Santa Maria (although some of the older
generation would say that he was no age at all,
as living into your 90's is not uncommon here).
He was to be seen at some point on most days,
slowly trundling around in his motorised
scooter, seeing what was going on
in his little world.
For 2 years he glowered at us every time we
smiled at him & nodded as we walked past.
I, in particular, found it amusing and I was determined
that one day he would smile in return.
Then last year he suddenly started to say 'Buongiorno'
or 'Buona sera' to us, although it took him
another few months before he actually smiled
when he saw us.
One afternoon last week we watched him trundle down
the newly finished access ramp from his front
door & up towards Bar L'Ancora before
turning left towards Corso Matarazzo.
He looked at us as he trundled along & then turned
his scooter full circle to smile and say 'buona sera'.
And that was the last time we saw him.
He died at 3 am yesterday and his funeral was at 10 am
I don't have a photograph of him,
but looking at his yellow house on the edge of
Marina Piccola, knowing that he'll never
come out of the front door again, will seem