Posts Tagged ‘pasta’

Firenze

Monday, April 20th, 2009
All aboard!!

All aboard!!

candleinflorenceduomo

We conquered train travel by rolling down the hill from our apartment to the Buonconvento Station and catching a 2 hour train directly to Florence!

It was a little intimidating for at first, but along with the Jensons, we caught the train so that we could get closer to town and got ourselves to the Duomo. We found it amazing on the outside, but a real bore on the inside.

Steve and I continue to pray inside each church we visit, for a European revival of faith. Inside each church we also light a candle for my little church back home. All of the churches still have their altars banked with Easter flowers and it is very pretty!

We had made a reservation at the Uffiziand we were there at our appointed hour of 13:15 (they use a twenty-four hour clock everywhere). I think we managed to see what we wanted to see: “Birth of Venus” by Botticelli and a painting by pontevecchiojewlryLeonardo di Vinci. The copy of the statue of “David” by Michelangelo in the public square was good enough, rather than face more lines to see the original.

We headed to the Ponte Vecchio (“old bridge”) which is covered with jewelry stores! We consumed more gelato, tried cannoli, and had a waffle sandwich (fudge sauce, gelato and whipped cream) that was to die for. Hey, Italy isn’t only about wine and pasta! We got back to the train, and shared a copy of USA Today while we bounced back home after an amazing day.

Buongiourno, Montalcino!!

Sunday, April 5th, 2009

Holding our breath, we found Montalcino (without getting lost) and she is all we hoped she would be!

HOME

HOME

We are in rural Italy 1950’s, a view of farmlands and vineyards from our back door terrace. The weather is sunny and mid-60’s and the street out in front of our apartment allows no cars.  Currently, a semi-swap meet is happening, and every evening from 5-8-ish the folk stroll the main piazza just to meet and greet(we are being looked-over, but greeted cordially). The main thorough-fare is almost 400yards long and  there are probably 10 winebars, 4 bakeries, 2 shoe stores, 2 butchers, 1 fish market, etc, etc. Oh yes, 4 pizzerias. We tried one last night and it was fantastico.

Stress is starting to melt away, as we do our best to communicate with the town-folks. We begin in Italian, where they jibber jabber back like we were native, then we ask if they speak english (parla englese?) and then piece-meal a conversation with a little of everything but pig-latin. Everyone eats later here, and there is wine-hour instead of tea-time. I think I can get use to that. You can also bring your own empty liter into a wine store and ask them to “fill’er up” with the house table wine.

viewfromterraceThe apartment  looks out on a stupendous view and is quaint and provencial.  The streets are narrow and cobbled, and major walking requires you be a mountain goat – not difficult, but a challenge for the challenged. We are starting to ease into a slower pace, and I am cooking pasta with zuchini, tomatoes and parmesan tonight and of course, some wine. Wish you all were here, but we will try to send you the  flavors of Montalcino, Tuscany.

Ciao, for now.  Buon apetito!