Bella Italia

Bella Italia

It pretty much goes without saying that the Italian countryside is a photographer’s dream. So this post is going to be mostly photos I took yesterday in the village of Panzano and the tiny hamlet of Volpaia. And a toilet story. But that’s pretty much it. Oh, and a funny video if I can figure out how to load that here, but that is definitely it.

I will do the gallery upload, so you will have to touch the first picture to enlarge it, then you can scroll through.

This is Panzano:

Here’s how we used to do selfies in the olden days – find a good reflective window and strike a pose

Next stop, the tiny hamlet of Volpaia (vole pie ah). We had been here many years ago and wanted to go back to see if the little neighbourhood dog we had met then (a wiener dog named Arturo) was still there. Apparently he and his buddies just came down to the square from their respective houses and had a little get together every day. Sadly, Arturo has passed away, though we made top brownie points with the owner for coming back and reminding her of little Arturo. These photos are of Volpaia:

Because most of the bathrooms here are retrofitted, they are usually tiny little windowless closet type single units that don’t encourage sitting around. One of the ways this strategy is reinforced, is to have the lights on a timer. A short timer. That turns the lights off. The first time this happened to me – and I was plunged into total darkness – I almost had a heart attack. So I continued to sit very still, trying to figure out what to do and if I could undo the lock without being able to see or find it. Luckily for me, this was the post-cell phone era and I had the flashlight app on my phone. I was feeling a little smug as the room lit up for me and I managed to get out without screaming for help. Here is a photo of a typical bathroom for reference:

Of course, at some point I figured out that sitting quite still was exactly the wrong thing to do in this situation, the correct strategy is to wave one’s arms wildly until the light comes back on. So when the room went black this time,

This is an actual shot taken in the stall when the lights went out

I knew exactly what to do – and felt pretty damned smug about it this time too

Apparently the farmers are all watching and waiting right now for the grapes to be at the absolute moment of perfection before picking. These extra days of hot weather are a bonus, but don’t wait too long, or the rain will come and then the ultimate moment will have passed. With rain forecasted for tomorrow, apparently today is the day.

The wine growers plant roses at the end of the vineyards because they will be the first to show any early signs of bug infestation or fungal disease.

We have just returned from a spectacular lunch at Osteria Fonterutoli – another favourite from past trips.

Someone’s happy!

So that’s it – you are pretty much up to date with us. We are enjoying the sights, the sounds, the tastes and, more importantly, each other here. Now – unfortunately – I don’t seem to be able to upload the videos, but I will keep trying and add later if possible. Sorry about that.

Ciao for now . . .

One response to “Bella Italia”

  1. Thank goodness for flashlights on phones. Trying to go the bathroom in the dark would be hmm interesting.
    Beautiful pictures again and the two of you look so relaxed and happy. Italian life defiantly suites the two of you.


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