Summer in Italy
Well, we've got to drive home either tomorrow, Friday or Saturday, as our ferry sails from Calais on Monday 3rd. After 5 weeks at our apartment a few miles from the Tuscan/Ligurian coast, it's time to leave. Reluctantly. The weather has been fantastic, sunny, hot, breezy, stormy, but always great for sitting in the garden and contemplating the withering apple tree, (for lack of rain), and the ever changing mountain ranges that appear and disappear according to the amount of cloud in the sky. There have been fairs, festas, and sagras, in the neighbouring hill villages. We have been to as many as possible, and enjoyed seeing Italy and the Italians as they are. We've had a few visitors from England, and they have shared our enthusiams for the area and nearby towns and villages. We wish we had more language skills to communicate with our friendly neighbours who have shared produce from their ortos, introductions to visiting Italian family members from Milan and beyond, and their cheery morning and evening greetings. They always want to know where we have been that day, how our family members are that they have met on previous visits, and if we are well and happy. When I had a cough they sent cough medicine and honey for infusing with hot milk, (a whole jar from a neighbour's bees), and concern and well wishes conveyed in genuine smiles, waves and gestures. I've heard them arguing, I've heard them singing - sounds like opera; one sings something and the other sings back their response, no inhibitions. Dance music emanates from their open window at 11.30am along with the aroma of soup on the boil, and I get the feeling they are 'smooth dancing' around the kitchen table. In contrast, my mum and dad at home in the UK would be awaiting the BBC midday news on tv! We won't be back for a few weeks, but I know my neighbours will water my geraniums, potted by me only a month ago upon my arrival here, and the plants will be blooming when I return in October to shut our place up for the winter to await our return at Easter 2013.How fortunate are we?