An oompa-loompa free chocolate festival

Sunday, Oct. 17

So today we went to Eurochocolate 2010 in Perugia, Italy. I was picturing chocolate fountains, (that I could swim in), deep fried chocolate, chocolate covered chocolate and oompa loompas.

Perhaps my sights were set a little high. While it was still an amazing experience, it definitely didn’t have any of the above.

It was great because we went with some great people: a couple from Ottawa and a guy from Texas. (My sister is still here as well.)

Together, in our six-some, we ventured through the sea of people. There was definitely a crowd of over 20,000.

Between the strollers, dogs and sharp-edged umbrellas, there were endless booths of chocolate. Toblerone, Lindt and Nutella were all on hand.

There were chocolate covered lemons, pineapples and oranges; chocolate covered bananas with nuts; chocolate kebabs (the meat in a regular kebab was replaced with shards of dark and white chocolate) and chocolate crepes. There was even a gluten free section – but it was far too expensive, so I just drooled and walked on.

We also saw about four or five huge bricks of chocolate, about one-metre square, on separate stages throughout the city. Men and women were using axes, chisels and hammers to sculpt their works of art. Because it was only the second day of the nine-day festival, we couldn’t really tell what they were creating. But with chocolate flying everywhere, we didn’t care.

The chocolate – which was literally jumping with each swing of the axe – was handed out to the crowd for free. I obviously waited for some. I got abused by the crowd in the process, and I might have even elbowed a small child. But all was forgiven when I got my baggie of dark chocolate.

Following our sugar overload, it was time for lunch. I went to an actual Kebab shop so I could get a delicious plate of beef. They refused to make it on a plate (as it was pictured on the menu), so I just ordered Matt a beer. I gave the guy a 20 Euro note and he gave me change for a five.

I lost it.

I even got Matt to come in and yell at him. Then, I pulled the ultimate mom move. I turned to everyone in the shop and yelled, “Don’t eat here – they will steal your money.”

(I was already dressed as a stereotypical soccer mom, sporting a North Face fleece, a flowered scarf tucked into the neck, sunglasses shoved in the scarf, my hair slicked into a pony tail and some blue jeans.)

So Matt enjoyed his 17 Euro beer.

And then it started to pour rain. Instead of standing outside the Kebab shop warning those poor, innocent tourists of the evil man inside, we went home.

Excited to make a delicious dinner, we found some fungus on the stove that Ninna Nanna (the hostel owner) had cooked for dinner.

The only way we could use the kitchen was by cleaning her mess. She watched us clean the entire room and didn’t even flinch. Neither did her two teenage sons who were playing wizard card games and listening to the same annoying R&B song on repeat for over an hour.

After eating, we went up to our room. That’s when I found a 20 Euro note in my pocket. I guess I freaked out at the chocolate festival for no reason.

Overall, it was a great day.

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