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Archive for the ‘Italy & France Oct/Nov. 2010’


October 30, 2010 By: admin Category: Italy & France Oct/Nov. 2010

This is the photo that defines my firs day in Tuscany: David, Carolyn, and the owner at Il Vinaio, a wine & olive oil shop.

The moment I slid into my seat on the Luftansa flight from Boston to Munich, my body and mind relaxed. I dont know what was in the air on that plane, but it was the most comfortable flight I’ve ever been on. Might have been my attitude, but the food and in-flight service were also excellent. Lastly, I met my seat neighbor, a Saudi name Mahjdi (pronounced “MEHJ-dee”), and we talked for nearly the entire flight, making the time whiz by. I wasn’t at all bugged about the length of the flight, though. It was just over seven hours, but given that my last two international flights were to India, I laughed a little bit about how easy 7 hours was going to be… :)

Mahjdi told me all kinds of things I didn’t know about life in Riyadh, and peaked my interest and shame-of-ignorance enough that I’m considering learning Arabic after Italian, which is now A MUST. :)


Yesterday was my first day in Tuscany. Carolyn and David have a small, but very well appointed apartment in Pieve di Cerreto, a tiny village outside the larger, Cerreto about 1.5 hours outside Pisa. When we got to the apt. around 2:00pm we wasted no time. I grabbed my camera for a nice, long walk. I bought olive oil for gifts for the French folks, and wine for the three of us for dinners/loungings in the apt. We met their neighbors and chatted in our broken Italian. Turns I actually HAVE some broken Italian. Being here yesterday and trying to communicate with people rebit me with the language bug. I feel awful that I’m not fluent in Italian. It’s such an easy language for me to learn! Once I get home I’m definitely taking a class…

After our walk, I showered, changed and read for a bit while noshing on appetizers of pesto & truffle butter smeared fresh focaccia with prosciutto on top chased by the local wine we’d bought earlier. That was at about 6:00pm. The Italians eat late so our dinner reservation wasn’t until 8:00pm.

Dinner @ Osteria i Macelli.

A young guy and his wife run this small, inexpensive restaurant tucked into a valley down the hill from Carolyn & David’s place. D.E.L.I.C.I.O.U.S. food. I had vegetable soup, pasta white white truffle sauce–the first time i ate truffles!–duck, wild board, wine and Limoncello. The wine was local too. Macea (Mah-CHAY-ah) is the vineyard/label.

More tomorrow! Lucca!