A salute to Sicily, where Italy is in full flower

Palermo Cathedral, or Cattedrale di Palermo, was built in the 12th century and is a mix of architectural styles — Arab, Norman, Byzantine, Gothic and Baroque among them.
(majaiva / Getty Images)

Finally, someone was able to describe Sicily, the exuberance, the great hospitality and the food [“Taste of Its Past,” by Alice Short, May 27].

Sicily is often maligned, partly out of ignorance. Paraphrasing Goethe: To go to Italy and not to visit Sicily, is like not being in Italy at all.

I am not going to try to emulate the way Short described her sojourn in the island. Unique. She said it all.

The “pastries with ricotta” she mentioned most probably were the Sicilian cassatelle. I am glad she got to taste the renowned pasta with sarde also called pasta di San Giuseppe, which is specially made on March 19, St. Joseph’s Day, or any other day.

Next time, travel to the west coast of the island. It would be another spectacular surprise. Do not forget to taste the cassata Siciliana and cannoli.


Thanks for the compliments and “affection” shown for the island.

John Genna, Simi Valley

Good reminder

Thanks so much for the article on Global Entry [“No Hurrying Entry Renewal,” On the Spot, by Catharine Hamm, May 27]. It prompted me to find out when my TSA PreCheck account expires (March). Without the information Hamm provided, I probably would have let the darn thing expire.

I appreciate the clarity and relevance of these articles.

Sharie Hartman, Oxnard

Ideas for how to use that gear

My compliments to Judi Dash. As a guy, I’m always interested in the “Gear” column. Today’s mention of the Scottevest sweatshirt with 21 pockets caught my attention because we bought one recently [“Zipped, Charged and Safe,” May 27].

I don’t intend to walk around during our three weeks in France carrying an iPad and other items in the 21 pockets, but we have another use for it. We have bulkhead seats on our transatlantic flight. This means we have tons of legroom, but nowhere to put our small bag and purse except the overhead bin.

We don’t like to leave valuables unlocked up there, so accessing anything (such as a disposable toothbrush) would be cumbersome. Pull down bag, unlock, open, pull out needed item, close, lock and put it back up. This would not make me the most popular flier in coach.

With the Scottevest, I plan to pocket both of our iPhones, plus earbuds, charging cables, my wife’s necessary cosmetics, disposable toothbrushes, daily pills, etc. And, probably, our passports so that we don’t have to open the luggage until we’re past Customs.

We’ll see how it works out.

Tom and Linda French, Hermosa Beach