“Sant’Antonio fammi sposare che sono stufa di tribolare”.
(St. Anthony find me a husband as I’m sick of being single.)
“Sant’Antonio con i pantoloni di velluto, fammi ritrovare quello che ho perduto”.
(St. Anthony with the velvet pants, let me find what I’ve lost.)
As the patron saint of butchers, farmers, ranchers, and protector of farm and domestic animals, festivals held in his honor occur during the week leading up to the 17th. Small or large, it’s a way to explore local neighborhoods, but it is especially big with pet owners when the priest does a blessing of the animals.
This past Sunday we went to one such occasion in nearby Olginate. They had games for the kids, a marching band, roasting chestnuts, open house of a 13th century convent (above), and a big tent offering set menus accompanied by the local beer. They fed us well for 43€!
Given the sociable predisposition of dogs it was no surprise that there were lots of them and zero cats. Big dogs, little dogs, happy dogs, yappy dogs, quiet dogs, psycho dogs, and then there was Maddie the flirt and Mister the I-don’t-want-to-fit-in-the-photo.
In Veneto, legend has it that animals acquire the ability to speak on the night of January 17. During this time farmers stayed clear of the barn because to hear animals talking was seen as a bad omen. Oh where is Dr. Doolittle when you need him?
If these two could speak I can tell you what they’d be saying. FEED US!