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I was thinking about your family while reading Dan Jones' Crusaders. I didn't know that before 1100AD, for a time, Sicily was majority Muslim for a period of time. Christians took it over in one of the "pre-Crusade" wars that really had less to do about religion and more about power. At that time Muslims could live in Christian areas in peace if they paid an extra tax (and vice versa).

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So, Christianity came about at the time the Normans took over? Maybe? The history of Sicily and the people who have called Sicily home over the many centuries is fascinating. I've only just begun scratching the surface.

Marcus, have you watched Stanley Tucci's series, Finding Italy, that he did for CNN? It's on HBO Max now, I think. Mike and I have watched both seasons, and though it's mostly about the history of food in Italy, it's also about the history of the people of Italy. The episode on Sicily was especially interesting because Sicily's food has been influenced by so many cultures from Greek, French, Spanish, African, Jewish, Arab, Norman, and of course, Italian.

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Well it's a little complicated but the Normans at first were not Christians but Rome collided with everything. I'll use the term "Christians" loosely because at this time in history Christianity was more a tool for power than an actual way of life...at least where governments and the church is concerned.

I have not watched that but have friends who loved it. I mean, if Stanley Tucci is in it, it will be good. I'll have to check it out. Thanks!

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I enjoyed your article but I'm giving a little warning. Don't put off too long doing the trip or whatever it is you want to do with your husband. I walked that walk with my husband. We did take some of the trips we wanted but kept putting off several of them. My husband contracted cancer which we were totally unprepared for and I am now a widow. I don't want to frighten you but please don't procrastinate too long. Take care and keep writing. Lois G. Powell

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Oh, Lois, I am so terribly sorry about your husband. And I 100% hear you and appreciate the advice. You are so right... we shouldn't put off these things. Thank you!

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