This year (September 1, 2001), my wife and I decided to see a part of Italy we had not previously been to. Many of our American friends, of Italian ancestry, trace their roots to Sicily. We were cautioned that we might encounter some crime or danger there due to the fact of high unemployment and high Mafiosa activity. On the contrary we have never felt safer than we did during our time in Sicily. The people were kind, generous, and warm hearted. We are not naive young tourists and did not go into "the Bronx" late at night - alone. We did not venture down dark back allies. Perhaps if more Americans used good judgement, more would find the Sicily that my wife and I encountered. Our hosts, fellow Neapolitan Mastiff breeders, were generous with their time and opened their homes to us. To all of them we say thank you. Please allow us to return the favor in the future.

Our flight on British Air Ways was great- the seating was comfortable and the hosts and hostesses were friendly. We arrived in Palermo September 1, 2001 with no luggage thanks to the ineptitude of the British Air Ways luggage people in Rome. To lose luggage is a fact of life... to lie about it for four days and make up crazy excuses is someting else. To those we spoke to: Paolo, Pierreluigi, Mr. Danielle- Please get a job you are qualified for....McDonalds? (When I suggested that they pay for some clothing on day three, their response was "sure- spend up to $100." My shoes alone cost more than that!

Having gotten that out of the way, let us proceed to the first breeders we saw in Palermo- CheTina and Carlo Nicolletti.

CheTina and Carlo Nicolletti had expected our visit. We had learned of their kennel, Allevamento di FondoAnfossi, on the internet and made contact some months before. We saw a multitude of their dogs and dogs of their friends. Perhaps the most efficient viewing of these beautiful Neos would be just to list them in order of being shown.

The next day we spent a few hours with Mr. Giuseppe Vilardo and Mr. Fabio Di Giorgi. Vilardo Arke' Kunon is a well known kennel with many awards to its credits. They showed several pups as well as Ronaldo a beautiful 2 y.o. male offspring of Brigante del Castellaccio and one more.

September 11, 2001 found us at the home of Mr. Salvatore Scherma and his lovely wife Daniela Di Stefano. (I always knew that dog watching could save one's life!) Our thanks also to Corrado Basile and his lovely wife, Elvira Ruisi, for the help they provided. The following is a listing of the dogs we saw. I must add that Brigante is one of the most well know Neos in Italy, having won 15 "Best in Show" as well as being "Best of Breed" at S.A.M.N. 2001. Mr. Scherma's web page can be seen here